The Sex Lives of Cannibals

Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific

Troost, J. Maarten

Paperback - 2004
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Sex Lives of Cannibals
At the age of twenty-six, Maarten Troost--who had been pushing the snooze button on the alarm clock of life by racking up useless graduate degrees and muddling through a series of temp jobs--decided to pack up his flip-flops and move to Tarawa, a remote South Pacific island in the Republic of Kiribati. He was restless and lacked direction, and the idea of dropping everything and moving to the ends of the earth was irresistibly romantic. He should have known better. The Sex Lives of Cannibals tells the hilarious story of what happens when Troost discovers that Tarawa is not the island paradise he dreamed of. Falling into one amusing misadventure after another, Troost struggles through relentless, stifling heat, a variety of deadly bacteria, polluted seas, toxic fish--all in a country where the only music to be heard for miles around is "La Macarena." He and his stalwart girlfriend Sylvia spend the next two years battling incompetent government officials, alarmingly large critters, erratic electricity, and a paucity of food options (including the Great Beer Crisis); and contending with a bizarre cast of local characters, including "Half-Dead Fred" and the self-proclaimed Poet Laureate of Tarawa (a British drunkard who's never written a poem in his life). With The Sex Lives of Cannibals , Maarten Troost has delivered one of the most original, rip-roaringly funny travelogues in years--one that will leave you thankful for staples of American civilization such as coffee, regular showers, and tabloid news, and that will provide the ultimate vicarious adventure.

Published: New York : Broadway Books, 2004.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 0767915305
Branch Call Number: 306.0996 TRO
Characteristics: xiii, 272, [1] p. ;,21 cm.


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Oct 26, 2014
  • WVMLStaffPicks rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Living on a tropical atoll sounds like everyone's idea of paradise, right? This story may just shift your perspective. Written long after the author's two-year escape to Kiribati, an isolated island nation in the South Pacific, The Sex Lives of Cannibals is a hilarious look at where life can take you - should you be brave, or crazy enough to simply go along for the ride.

Jun 10, 2013

"When 26-year-old J. Maarten Troost's girlfriend accepted a temporary position in the tiny island nation of Kiribati, he decided to tag along, fully expecting to spend the next two years in a tropical paradise. Upon arrival, however, Troost quickly discovered the reality of life on the atoll: suffocating heat, polluted waters, exotic diseases, and a distinct lack of modern conveniences. As Troost entertainingly (some would say hilariously) recounts the difficulties of adjusting to life in Kiribati, he also reveals a growing appreciation for his new home and its people. Publishers Weekly calls The Sex Lives of Cannibals, Troost's first book, a "comic masterwork of travel writing". Readers who can't get enough Troost can pick up his Getting Stoned with Savages. Fans of TV's Globe Trekker should certainly check out Troost's work." June 2013 Armchair Travel newsletter

Jun 15, 2011
  • jdcummings rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Excellent book! Allows you to live vicariously through the author as he details a once-in-a-lifetime adventure to an isolated South Pacific island. Well written - both clever and funny. The worst part was that the book had to end!

Oct 07, 2010
  • Mobama68 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

If you have ever dreamed of pulling up stakes and moving to a remote will love this book.

Nov 25, 2009
  • Ubalstecha rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Brilliantly funny travel diary about an American who undergoes culture shock when he goes to live on a small pacific Island. Full of bizarre and hilarious vignettes, like landing a plane on a runway full of pigs and playing children, or swimming in the ocean the natives use as a bathroom.


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