Creates a portrait of Colombia that is perceptive, unsensational, and full of humanity ... Feiling is a brilliant reporter, lucid, unflinching, morally engaged, and with an occasional deadpan sense of humour .. one of the most consistently intelligent and compelling books to have appeared on any South American country in recent years (Michael Jacobs Independent)
Tom Feiling takes us on an enlightening journey through a changing country that few understand (Rachel Aspden Observer)
A deeply political account of one man's journey to the violent heart of modern, rural, Colombia ... a must read (Kevin Howlett Colombia Politics)
Feiling... venture[s] into areas that have been off limits for decades ... the sense of a vibrant nation worth discovering peeks out (Siobhan Murphy Metro)
The best British travel writers like Norman Lewis or Bruce Chatwin give the reader more than simple travellers' tales. Feiling is of their company ... a brilliant, penetrating and highly readable account (Robert Carver Spectator)
[Praise for The Candy Machine] The Candy Machine is highly addictive (Metro)
A vivid, argumentative, arresting book (Sunday Telegraph)
I've read a few documentary accounts of the rise of cocaine, and this might be the best of them. It's clear, sharp and solid. Very well told (Evening Standard)
For decades, Colombia was the 'narcostate'. Now travel to Colombia and South America is on the rise, and it's seen as one of the rising stars of the global economy. Where does the truth lie?
Writer and journalist Tom Feiling, author of the acclaimed study of cocaine The Candy Machine, has journeyed throughout Colombia, down roads that were until recently too dangerous to travel, to paint a fresh picture of one of the world's most notorious and least-understood countries. He talks to former guerrilla fighters and their ex-captives; women whose sons were 'disappeared' by paramilitaries; the nomadic tribe who once thought they were the only people on earth and now charge $10 for a photo; the Japanese 'emerald cowboy' who made a fortune from mining; and revels in the stories that countless ordinary Colombians tell.
How did a land likened to paradise by the first conquistadores become a byword for hell on earth? Why is one of the world's most unequal nations also one of its happiest? How is it rebuilding itself after decades of violence, and how successful has the process been so far? Vital, shocking, often funny and never simplistic, Short Walks from Bogota unpicks the tangled fabric of Colombia, to create a stunning work of reportage, history and travel writing.