Troost Sex Lives Cannibals

J. Maarten Troost

J. Maarten Troost, a Netherlands-born American, is an acclaimed writer and essayist. With four books and numerous articles in such publications as The Atlantic Monthly and The Washington Post, Troost is at the top of his literary game. His most popular writing centers around his travels in the Eastern Hemisphere, both in China and the Equatorial Pacific Islands.

The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific

This book spans the two years that he and his then-future wife spent in the nation of Kiribati during the 1990’s. When his fiance Sylvia lands a job with a governmental agency on Kiribati’s most populous island of Tarawa, Troost tags along. He is appalled at everything he sees at first, as he tries to pass his time away with writing; soon, however, he comes to love the island and the I-Kiribati people that call it home.

The Sex Lives of Cannibals is a well-written book, full of self-deprecating humor and witty commentary in a style similar to Bill Bryson at his finest that cause the pages to fly by; you’ll finish the book far too soon, wanting more. The story offers a unique perspective of island life on a Pacific atoll far removed from the news, fashions, and influences from abroad. The book is beautiful and shines a light on staying optimistic in the most dire circumstances, as Troost learned during his time on Tarawa. Highly recommended travel reading!


This “Recommended Reading” column is a short dedication to books that I believe are relevant to travel. They may be fiction, biographies, recounts of a specific adventures, and I’ve fully read the mentioned book and recommend it for one or more reasons to other travelers. Disclaimer: I do not consider myself a writer of any particular strength or merit, but these are not reviews. I will not consider grammar, style, or locution, unless it is in a positive light. I recommend these books simply for the fact that I believe that they contribute to inspiring a desire for travel, a consciousness of cultures and traditions, and/or a thirst for learning about the world. For more “Recommended Reading,” click HERE ->

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