James Chilton had travelled 20,000 miles before the age of three – which might go some way to explaining his inexhaustible passion for travel and discovery. Chilton describes himself not as a ‘pioneering adventurer’ but as someone who likes to observe and take in his surroundings, and to ‘enjoy the quirks of human nature wherever they are found.’
The Last Blue Mountain is a fascinating collection of Chilton’s travel writing, pieces he has written at a huge number of locations all over the globe. From a New Year’s Eve spent aboard a ship of the coast of the Antarctic Peninsula to hiking through the Alps in Italy, he gives us wonderfully rich and entertaining accounts of his travels. The beauty of his writing is in the details which bring each scene to life – the people he meets and the buildings and scenery he sees – all is woven into each piece to really give a sense of how it was.
Peru, Australia, Russia, the Middle East…there is a huge variety in the experiences Chilton has had and countries he has been to, my only criticism would be that I was sometimes left wanting more at the end of each chapter. With exquisite pen and ink drawings which fit the feel of each chapter perfectly (and are far superior to a photograph), this book will make you want to pack in your day job and go travelling. Immediately.