PUBLISHED: 5:30 PM on Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Smile When You're Lying by Chuck Thompson
Book Review
If you have ever wondered why your travel experiences don't seem up to par with the ones you read about in all those travel magazines then you aren't out of your mind. Juneau native Chuck Thompson lays it out straight as to what the travel industry is really like. Taking the reader behind the scenes, and in between the lines of travel narratives not so normal, but every bit real, Thompson hands out a sturdy dose of what actually happens on the other side of that airport terminal.

"Smile When You're Lying" will surely offend everyone in someway and in other ways have you rallying with him. His insight into the real travel world and travel writing industry sometimes conjures the shocking reaction akin to pulling up the skirt of a stranger. Thompson keeps you on the brink of your spectacles if you wear them and rolls out line after line that will have you quipping aloud with his hilarious travel stories and his highly opinionated lines, on everything from Lonely Planet travel guides to post Cold War Germany.

Having grown up in Juneau and traveled all over the world, as a writer, editor and photographer, Thompson has a well-rounded stack of travel experiences which never made it to print, for their unconventional angles. "In Smile When You're Lying," Thompson holds nothing back. He takes us with him when he gets stranded on a beach in Thailand, runs out of gas in Canada and almost gets picked off by a machete laden gang in the Philippines, which he laments is still one of his favorite places to travel.

Though some may deem the exposure in Thompson's anecdotes offensive, they are of real life experience and redeem him by providing us a hidden reality clearer than the Sake one can find in Asia.