Nicole Roetheli

Overall Rating: 3
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Author: Nicole Roetheli
Title: Nicole's Diary: Running the World... Losing Our Marbles
Time: 2000-2005
Destination: world
Length: 5 years
Type: motorcycle ride

wife and diary keeper

The story: Remember Serge Roetheli, the guy who fabulously ran around the world and wrote a book about it that just wasn’t that good? Well, NR is his wife, the person who kept him company on her motorcycle during the trip. And this is the book she wrote, which is supposed to tell the story from her perspective. Obviously, we are reminded of Ella Maillart and Peter Fleming, both of whom were very good writers.

why so choppy?

It’s interesting to read NR’s story after Serge Roetheli’s account, mainly because some of the wordings in both books seem to be identical. And while you’re pondering the question of who copied from whom, you realize that NR’s writing reads like the less polished one. In fact, it is more like a diary than anything else: the chapters are held together not by a consistent storyline or even a storytelling voice, but by the timeframe of the trip: from day to day, month to month, country to country, NR tells us what happened.

This doesn’t make reading more enjoyable. But it makes it seem rather fresh and direct.

better than Serge?

I am not sure what to make of this book. I feel sympathetic to both the runner and his wife, but I like to read books that have a storyline and a unique voice. Comparing this to Ella Maillart and Peter Fleming just makes it worse: Maillart and Fleming also went on a trip together, and the books they wrote about it turned out very different, yet both of them managed to tell a unique and interesting story.
But this one, just like Serge Roetheli’s book, is just choppy. Sure there’s plenty of information in it. But it doesn’t tell a story.

I’d say this book is only recommendable for the outdoor enthusiast.


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