Editorial Review: Satan's Gut, Sausage Boats & Ice Kisses by Tony Fosgate
In ‘Satan's Gut, Sausage Boats & Ice Kisses: The Adventure Travel Notes of a Nervous Man’ Tony Fosgate takes readers on a wild ride of white-water rafting, arctic exploration, and adrenaline inducing pastimes around the world.
From the desert to the North Pole, Tony Fosgate has a death-defying experience to tell you about. Not that plummeting headfirst down a toboggan course and avoiding polar bears on your afternoon stroll are actually that dangerous – not as dangerous as cheerleading anyway! This fantastically fast paced, but detailed, collection of stories from the author's travels will either make you gasp at the concept or start planning your own extreme getaway. But why do we, the human race, take part in adrenaline sports on such a grand scale? Tony Fosgate has thought about that too, and he backs it all up with some very satisfying facts, figures, and research.
Tony Fosgate's book takes off on the rapids of the Colorado River, white-water rafting on one of the worlds most feared and revered courses. Readers live the experience alongside the memorable characters in the sausage boat, all while learning more about the adventure sport. In the next chapter, far from the deserts of Colorado and the rushing pace of the rapids, readers spend an unexpectedly long time waiting with Tony Fosgate for his route to the North Pole to be blizzard free. This adventure turns out to be several adventures all rolled into one as the characters struggle to get around in the arctic. The third story takes place in St Moritz where finding a meal you can afford without a bank loan is almost as challenging as the author's actual aim of the trip – to complete the world-famous skeleton toboggan course, The Cresta.
Throughout the rest of the book Tony Fosgate provides interesting insights into the history of each of the places he’s been talking about. He tells the stories of the original river runners in the 19th century, as well as fascinating bits of folk lore from the modern commercial boats. He follows with a short history of arctic exploration and the current state of the ice caps, as well as the story of how skeleton riding became a sport.
Satan's Gut, Sausage Boats & Ice Kisses might be full of travel stories, but it is far from a bar-room boast of the adrenaline junkie. The reader really begins to feel like they know Tony Fosgate. He is a self-proclaimed ‘nervous man’, and this is reassuring and refreshing in the sphere of adventure travel. While people would like to think that they wouldn’t hesitate at the challenges and dangers Tony Fosgate has faced, the majority of us would be quietly quaking in our boots. Tony Fosgate’s writing is easy to read and fun, but is interspersed with enough substance to be regarded as genuinely interesting.
While Satan's Gut, Sausage Boats & Ice Kisses is funny and light enough to be a casual holiday read, it is brilliantly researched and informative without becoming tedious. What we have in this book is the fortunate combination of a great subject and an entertaining author which makes for a great travel adventure for the reader – without having to leave their actual comfort zone.
Informative, down to earth, and disarmingly funny – Satan's Gut, Sausage Boats & Ice Kisses is a fantastic read whether you are an adrenaline chaser or not.