In Search of Genghis Khan

Tim Severin, Author, Timothy Severin, Author Atheneum Books $25 (241p) ISBN 978-0-689-12134-0
Riding alongside hardbitten Mongol herdsmen, Severin retraced part of the overland communication system that once linked the far-flung Mongolian empire. In a marvelous adventure that combines travel writing at its serendipitous best with dollops of history and politics, the noted explorer who has recreated crusaders' treks stares into the immense blue vault of Tengri, the Sky God who gave Genghis Khan a mandate to subjugate the world. Severin ( Tracking Marco Polo ) mingled with camel herders in the Gobi desert, weathered an August blizzard, met an old clairvoyant Tuva shamaness, supped with Kazakhs in their yurt (circular tent) and witnessed an outbreak of plague, which he claims is the same disease as the Black Death of medieval Europe. He probes the Mongols' nostalgia for national hero Genghis Khan and monitors the winds of change in a Stalinist-style country undergoing a perestroika liberalization and renaissance of lamaist religion amid a sudden withdrawal of Soviet aid. An enchanting odyssey. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/30/1992
Release date: 04/01/1992
Paperback - 141 pages - 978-0-02-081930-1
Paperback - 280 pages - 978-0-8154-1287-8
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