Paul Theroux's new book is Ghost Train to the Eastern Star: On the Tracks of the Great Railway Bazaar.
It's his account of retracing most of his original route that he chronicled in his 1975 best seller The Great Railway Bazaar — from London to Tokyo and back via Russia, mostly by train.
Bob Minzesheimer of USA Today asked him a few questions about the book, including:
Q: The most striking change you saw?Read the full Q & A.
A: Without question, Vietnam. From a country that was a muddy, flattened, bloody, beleaguered hell hole … to the country it is today: flourishing, forward-looking and, almost incredibly, forgiving.
Q: The biggest disappointment?
A: Burma was a military tyranny when I took the train to the far north all those years ago. Nothing has changed, though it seems quite a bit worse: poorer, more oppressed, more exploited, thanks to China and India's support of the Burmese generals.