Published by Hachette 2014 // ISBN-13: 9781857889284
A Scotsman Non-Fiction Book of the Year
“Terrific and terrifying” – TIM MOORE
“Doggedly intrepid” – TIME OUT
“A gem” – OLLY SMITH
“Downright inspirational” – MONEYLIFE
“A hilarious book” – POSTNOON
Seduced by the prospect of a low-cost, high-octane road trip around a country wholly unsuited to the endeavour, Vanessa Able scores a Tata Nano, the world’s cheapest car, and tests its limits for a three-month trip on India’s madcap roads.
Her tragi-comic journey takes her 10,000 kilometres around the country, from the through the abysmal traffic of gridlocked cities to the treacherous potholes of state highways and onto the high-speed, high-tech expressways of a more modern India. Along the way she learns through trial and copious error the unwritten rules that underlie what at first sight looks like pure anarchy.
Taking any help she can get – from loopy spiritual gurus to professional driving instructors, and even a divine insurance policy – she works her way around an alien road network where size, volume and lumens seem to trump all common sense. Narrowly escaping death by many a farty truck, she expertly dodges monkey attacks, evades an elephant mugging, and falls hopelessly in love with a mathematician who is probably the worst driver she’s ever met.