From acclaimed author Mark Anthony Jarman comes Touch Anywhere to Begin, his first book of travel writing since the publication of the critically acclaimed Ireland’s Eye in 2002.
In 18 unusual, head-spinning essays, Jarman can drift through Venice amid the revelry of carnival and the arrival of the impending pandemic or visit a private club along Shanghai’s Huangpu River to be serenaded by a band of retired People’s Liberation Army singers. In “Panthers and Gods Prowl a Palace of Sin,” an invitation to the Kala Ghoda Festival in Mumbai forges a connection with a jetlagged pair of Arctic throat singers and a doctor fascinated by Canada. In “Jesus on the Mainline,” an extended hospitalization beside the intubated victim of a drunk-driving accident reveals a difficult family drama.
And this, of course, is only the beginning. Masterfully written, Touch Anywhere to Begin penetrates the impressionistic moments and intimacies of travel to reveal character and place like none other.