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Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes

Robert Louis Stevenson

Book Overview: 

Travels With a Donkey is regarded as a classic of travel writing and an early inspiration for the idea of long-distance walking for pleasure - many a modern traveler follows the Stevenson Trail, now part of France's national network of long-distance walking routes.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I asked one of the children where I was.  At Bouchet St. Nicolas, he told me.  Thither, about a mile south of my destination, and on the other side of a respectable summit, had these confused roads and treacherous peasantry conducted me.  My shoulder was cut, so that it hurt sharply; my arm ached like toothache from perpetual beating; I gave up the lake and my design to camp, and asked for the auberge.

I HAVE A GOAD

The auberge of Bouchet St. Nicolas was among the least pretentious I have ever visited; but I saw many more of the like upon my journey.  Indeed, it was typical of these French highlands.  Imagine a cottage of two stories, with a bench before the door; the stable and kitchen in a suite, so that Modestine and I could hear each other dining; furniture of the plainest, earthern floors, a single bedchamber for travellers, and that without any convenience but beds.  In the kitchen cooking and eating go forward side by side, and the family sle. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Despite the advice and concerns of his wife and the friend dragged along on his last travel book, Stevenson decides to hike through rural France.
A couple days of hiking lead to the idea that he should buy a donkey to carry his baggage and everything will go smoothly.

Funny and entertaining, as Ste...more

Every book is, in an intimate sense, a circular letter to the friends of him who writes it. They alone take his meaning; they find private messages, assurances of love, and expressions of gratitude, dropped for them in every corner. The public is but a generous patron who defrays the postage.

In t...more

Ok. In terms of travel narratives, have read better and more interesting. Actually had a hard time getting through of it, found it a bit of a slog. But in terms of descriptive language, my god, the pictures this man paints with his words. . . Stevenson talaga. So I can't totally dismiss this book...more

A very sweet, early work from RLS. At first I absolutely cringed at some of the content of the story, with Modestine (the eponymous donkey) enduring her lashings, herself shutting her eyes in anticipation of being struck. But, I reminded myself that this is RLS as a young man in the 1870's, &...more

This is a travel journal of R.L.Stevenson written more than hundred years ago.The journey was completed within twelve days.So the book doesn't have many pages.What is actually has is a lot of humour in the beginning (sometimes one can even find oneself laughing).But as the book progresses,the hum...more

I had this book on my shelves for one or two years. Few days ago, after finishing Walden by Thoreau, I picked it up… just because it was small ! And what an interesting reading after Walden :
Two men living for a certain time in the nature. There are similar ways of living their adventures, simila...more

Non so perché Stevenson, che è sempre stato cagionevole di salute, abbia deciso di intraprendere questo viaggio proprio in autunno e non in una stagione più mite, ma i dodici giorni trascorsi nelle Cevenne in sua compagnia (e di Modestine) sono stati una continua meraviglia.
Il mondo visto con i s...more

Robert Louis Stevenson’s account of his 12 day hike through the Cévennes mountains in Southern France, accompanied only by his determined and sometimes stubborn donkey Modestine.

This little book shares the adventures of Robert Louis Stevenson and his donkey Modestine during their journey through the Cevennes region of France. RLS had no donkey-driving experience before this trip, and if I had endured his terrible first days in person, I would have run screaming into the...more

Small time in Florac. Time to read again this book. With Modestine (the dunkey) He crossed this poor and austere area from the north catholic Gévaudan to the South Protestant Cevennes. He delivers to us very fine observation on people and country. Especially, his glance on inhabitant's opinion is...more

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