“Well, officially it’s Marco Polo describing the cities of his travels to Kublai Khan. It’s been opined that every city he describes is a version of Venice, but I think that doesn’t really work. They seem to me to be marvellous imaginative fantasies, which sometimes reproduce states of mind. There are 40 or so cities described, all entirely imaginary I think, and that’s what’s so magical about them. But there are passages that are suggestive of something, and nearly always of the way memory works. It’s a very hard book to describe, because the cities are never just a description of a place. They all mirror states of mind and being……..I chose it for its sheer imaginative quality. I loved it almost as an extension of the travel book in the mind – the travel book that has no responsibility to where it has been because it hasn’t been anywhere real, it’s been in the realm of ideas and images.” Read more...
The Best Travel Writing