South from Barbary: Along the Slave Routes of the Libyan Sahara

by Justin Marozzi

Book cover for South from Barbary: Along the Slave Routes of the Libyan Sahara

An account of Justin Marozzi's 1500-mile journey by camel along the slave-trade routes of the Libyan Sahara. Marozzi and his travelling companion Ned had never travelled in the desert, nor had they ridden camels before embarking on this expedition. Encouraged by a series of idiosyncratic Touareg and Tubbu guides, they learnt the full range of desert survival skills, including how to master their five faithful camels. The caravan of two explorers, five camels with distinctive personalities and their guides undertook a gruelling journey across some of the most inhospitable territory on earth. Despite threats from Libyan officialdom and the ancient, natural hardships of the desert, Marozzi and Ned found themselves growing ever closer to the land and its people. More than a travelogue, "South from Barbary" is a fascinating history of Saharan exploration and efforts by early British explorers to suppress the African slave trade. It evokes the poetry and solitude of the desert, the companionship of man and beast, the plight of a benighted nation, and the humour and generosity of its resilient people.

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