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Cocaine Train: Tracing My Bloodline Through Colombia

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Nine times more dangerous than the United States, Columbia is no place for the nervous traveller. So it is against his better judgement that, in the summer of 1998, journalist Stephen Smith finds himself boarding the Cocaine Train out of Cali, home of Columbia's infamous drugs cartel. The Cocaine Train is one of the last remnants of a once great railway system, and Smith i Nine times more dangerous than the United States, Columbia is no place for the nervous traveller. So it is against his better judgement that, in the summer of 1998, journalist Stephen Smith finds himself boarding the Cocaine Train out of Cali, home of Columbia's infamous drugs cartel. The Cocaine Train is one of the last remnants of a once great railway system, and Smith is riding it in search of a grandfather he barely knew—Fred Leslie Frost, pioneering railwayman, upright citizen and diplomat, with a Columbian mistress and an illegitimate son.


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Nine times more dangerous than the United States, Columbia is no place for the nervous traveller. So it is against his better judgement that, in the summer of 1998, journalist Stephen Smith finds himself boarding the Cocaine Train out of Cali, home of Columbia's infamous drugs cartel. The Cocaine Train is one of the last remnants of a once great railway system, and Smith i Nine times more dangerous than the United States, Columbia is no place for the nervous traveller. So it is against his better judgement that, in the summer of 1998, journalist Stephen Smith finds himself boarding the Cocaine Train out of Cali, home of Columbia's infamous drugs cartel. The Cocaine Train is one of the last remnants of a once great railway system, and Smith is riding it in search of a grandfather he barely knew—Fred Leslie Frost, pioneering railwayman, upright citizen and diplomat, with a Columbian mistress and an illegitimate son.

41 review for Cocaine Train: Tracing My Bloodline Through Colombia

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Barton

    I tried about 50 pages. Very disjointed and hard to follow.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dagezi

    An incredibly stupid title, but really kind of excellent. Of course given that it's partially about the abandoned railways of Colombia (that the author's (British) grandfather basically built) it's right up my alley. Smith is uncommonly observant, has a good ear for metaphor and writes both drolly and with music. You have to admit this is a pretty cool sentence: "After a time, during which an embarrassed Federico tried unsuccessfully to start the Land Rover again, we abandoned it and set off on fo An incredibly stupid title, but really kind of excellent. Of course given that it's partially about the abandoned railways of Colombia (that the author's (British) grandfather basically built) it's right up my alley. Smith is uncommonly observant, has a good ear for metaphor and writes both drolly and with music. You have to admit this is a pretty cool sentence: "After a time, during which an embarrassed Federico tried unsuccessfully to start the Land Rover again, we abandoned it and set off on foot in two different directions, Federico and his son going back the way we'd come, to beg a set of wheel from a neighbour, and the rest of us hiking through the hot and ululating river basin towards the still distant farm, Cousin Louis talking unstoppably about humanism, and the spinster picking fruit off trees in an embittered way, and something in the undergrowth making a noise like a fax machine."

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jono

    Great read especially if you like trains, colombia and all that goes with it. The author really hits some relevant points and not in a dramatic way. Also for a country that no longer has a railway it curious to travel around and see the old tracks where it used to be. This book is written on that colombian cusp. Somewhere between nostalgia, colonialism, and the growth of narco economics and politics.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    An interesting tale about life in Colombia, post Escobar, but still endless killings and kidnappings. The story is about the author tracing the steps of his British grandfather who was responsible for much of the railway system in Colombia, which began to fall apart not long after the man departed for England.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Fabian Forero

    hola primo como estas quicieramos volver a saber de ti y conocer tus hermanos e bregado a buscarte por facebook pero nada asta que encontre aqui tus libros espero te llegue este mensaje mi numero telefonico es 2523642 gracias stephen

  6. 5 out of 5

    Marion

  7. 5 out of 5

    Gina

  8. 4 out of 5

    Chris

  9. 5 out of 5

    Scott

  10. 5 out of 5

    Daren

  11. 5 out of 5

    Mike Gordon

  12. 4 out of 5

    Adrian

  13. 5 out of 5

    Rik

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ellen

  15. 5 out of 5

    Holly

  16. 5 out of 5

    Charesa

  17. 5 out of 5

    Books To Travel With

  18. 5 out of 5

    Arjan

  19. 4 out of 5

    Daniel

  20. 5 out of 5

    Noel Hourican

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bertrand Joseph

  22. 5 out of 5

    Christian West

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mark

  24. 4 out of 5

    Russell Copp

  25. 5 out of 5

    Valerie Ogden

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ian

  27. 5 out of 5

    Max Renn

  28. 5 out of 5

    stan

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ellie Mills

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  31. 4 out of 5

    Håkan

  32. 5 out of 5

    Leparnell

  33. 4 out of 5

    pani Katarzyna

  34. 5 out of 5

    Mike Hamilton

  35. 4 out of 5

    Sam Wilson

  36. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

  37. 4 out of 5

    James

  38. 5 out of 5

    Eduardo

  39. 5 out of 5

    Shaun Underwood

  40. 5 out of 5

    Matt

  41. 5 out of 5

    Tarn

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