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Of Course, the Lonely Planet Scandal Makes Me Think of Favell Lee Mortimer

Filed under: Looked Into   Tagged: , , , , ,

…the Victorian maker-upper who wrote numerous guides to world travel, all of them questionable, since she’d hardly ever left England. Mortimer is now immortal thanks to my friend Todd Pruzan, who presents selections from her highly biased, nay, often offensive oevre in the endlessly funny The Clumsiest People in Europe: Or, Mrs. Mortimer’s Bad-Tempered Guide to the Victorian World.

Before I even knew Todd, I was praising his piece about her in The New Yorker. (NPR ran some choice excerpts from the book.) For real kicks, don’t bother rushing to read some kid’s faux Lonely Planet entries—just see what a very, very opinionated lady has to say about your friends and relatives. She was herself often disappointed, one surmises, but she certainly won’t disappoint you.


Good parallel, Emily. I loved the Pruzan piece when it came out. Good to know there’s a book I can track down.

can you tell me in which edition of the new yorker the todd pruzan article on mrs. mortimer appeared?

john maloneApril 21, 2008

Yes, indeed! It was April 11, 2005, and here’s the abstract.

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