At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig: Travels Through Paraguay

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9780099416555: At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig: Travels Through Paraguay

A wildly humorous account of the author's travels across Paraguay–South America's darkly fabled, little-known “island surrounded by land.”

Rarely visited by tourists and barely touched by global village sprawl, Paraguay remains a mystery to outsiders. Think of this small nation and your mind is likely to jump to Nazis, dictators, and soccer. Now, John Gimlette’s eye-opening book–equal parts travelogue, history, and unorthodox travel guide–breaches the boundaries of this isolated land,” and illuminates a little-understood place and its people.

It is a wonderfully animated telling of Paraguay's story: of cannibals, Jesuits, and sixteenth-century Anabaptists; of Victorian Australian socialists and talented smugglers; of dictators and their mad mistresses; bloody wars and Utopian settlements; and of lives transplanted from Japan, Britain, Poland, Russia, Germany, Ireland, Korea, and the United States. The author travels from the insular cities and towns of the east, along ghostly trails through the countryside, to reach the Gran Chaco of the west: the “green hell” covering almost two-thirds of the country, where 4 percent of the population coexists–more or very-much-less peacefully–with a vast array of exotic wildlife that includes jaguars, prehistoric lungfish, and their more recently evolved distant cousins, the great fighting river fish. Gimlette visits with Mennonites and the indigenas, arms dealers and real-estate tycoons, shopkeepers, government bureaucrats and, of course, Nazis.

Filled with bizarre incident, fascinating anecdote, and richly evocative detail, At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig is a brilliant description of a country of eccentricity and contradiction, of beguilingly individualistic men and women, and of unexpected and extraordinary beauty. It is a vivid, often riotous, always fascinating, journey.

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Product Description:

Haven to Nazis, smugglers’ paradise, home to some of the earth’s oddest wildlife and most baroquely awful dictatorships, Paraguay is a nation waiting for the right chronicler. In John Gimlette, at last it has one. With an adventurer’s sang-froid, a historian’s erudition, and a sense of irony so keen you could cut a finger on it, Gimlette celebrates the beauty, horror and–yes–charm of South America’s obscure and remote “island surrounded by land.”

He takes readers from genteel drawing rooms in Asuncion–where ladies still gossip about the nineteenth-century Irish adventuress who became Paraguay’s Empress to the “Green Hell” of the Chaco, a vast, inhospitable tract populated by aging Mennonites and discouraged Indians. Replete with eccentrics and scoundrels, ecologically minded cannibals and utopians from every corner of the earth, At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig is a madly entertaining book.

From the Inside Flap:

A vivid journey into Paraguay -- hellish jungles, dictators, flamboyant mistresses -- yet one of the most beautiful and
captivating countries in the world.

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Book Description Cornerstone, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Paraguay - the name conjures up everything most exotic and extreme in South America. It s a place of hellish jungles, dictators, fraudsters and Nazis, utopian experiments, missionaries and lurid coups. It s not a place for the timid tourist. It doesn t even have its own guidebook. But Paraguay, as revealed in this outstanding new travel book, is among the most beautiful and captivating countries in the world. The beguiling Paraguayans, despised and feared by their neighbours, are unfathomable. They adore Diana, Princess of Wales, as if she were still alive and hundreds volunteered to fight for Britain in the Falklands War. Their politics are Byzantine but when the Vice-President is murdered, they call in Scotland Yard. Discover more about the unique traditions of South American culture through this fascinating piece of travel journalism. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099416555

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Book Description Cornerstone, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 196 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Paraguay - the name conjures up everything most exotic and extreme in South America. It s a place of hellish jungles, dictators, fraudsters and Nazis, utopian experiments, missionaries and lurid coups. It s not a place for the timid tourist. It doesn t even have its own guidebook. But Paraguay, as revealed in this outstanding new travel book, is among the most beautiful and captivating countries in the world. The beguiling Paraguayans, despised and feared by their neighbours, are unfathomable. They adore Diana, Princess of Wales, as if she were still alive and hundreds volunteered to fight for Britain in the Falklands War. Their politics are Byzantine but when the Vice-President is murdered, they call in Scotland Yard. Discover more about the unique traditions of South American culture through this fascinating piece of travel journalism. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099416555

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Book Description Cornerstone. Book Condition: New. Paraguay - the name conjures up everything most exotic and extreme in South America. It's a place of hellish jungles, dictators, fraudsters and Nazis, utopian experiments, missionaries and lurid coups. This book reveals Paraguay as the most beautiful and captivating countries in the world. Num Pages: 400 pages, 16. BIC Classification: 1KLSP; HBJK; WTL. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 211 x 130 x 27. Weight in Grams: 284. . 2004. New Ed. Paperback. . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780099416555

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Book Description Cornerstone, 2004. Book Condition: New. Paraguay - the name conjures up everything most exotic and extreme in South America. It's a place of hellish jungles, dictators, fraudsters and Nazis, utopian experiments, missionaries and lurid coups. This book reveals Paraguay as the most beautiful and captivating countries in the world. Num Pages: 400 pages, 16. BIC Classification: 1KLSP; HBJK; WTL. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 211 x 130 x 27. Weight in Grams: 284. . 2004. New Ed. Paperback. . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780099416555

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Book Description Cornerstone. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig: Travels Through Paraguay, John Gimlette, Paraguay - the name conjures up everything most exotic and extreme in South America. It's a place of hellish jungles, dictators, fraudsters and Nazis, utopian experiments, missionaries and lurid coups. It's not a place for the timid tourist. It doesn't even have its own guidebook. But Paraguay, as revealed in this outstanding new travel book, is among the most beautiful and captivating countries in the world. The beguiling Paraguayans, despised and feared by their neighbours, are unfathomable. They adore Diana, Princess of Wales, as if she were still alive and hundreds volunteered to fight for Britain in the Falklands War. Their politics are Byzantine but when the Vice-President is murdered, they call in Scotland Yard. Discover more about the unique traditions of South American culture through this fascinating piece of travel journalism. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099416555

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