Perhaps the funniest travel book ever written, Remote People begins with a vivid account of the coronation of Emperor Ras Tafari - Haile Selassie I, King of Kings - an event covered by Evelyn Waugh in 1930 as special correspondent for The Times. It continues with subsequent travels throughout Africa, where natives rub shoulders with eccentric expatriates, settlers with Arab traders and dignitaries with monks. Interspersed with these colourful tales are three 'nightmares' which describe the vexations of travel, including returning home.
Evelyn Waugh was born in Hampstead in 1903, second son of Arthur Waugh, publisher and literary critic, and brother of Alec Waugh, the popular novelist. He was educated at Lancing and Hertford College, Oxford, where he read Modern History. In 1928 he published his first work, a life of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and his first novel, Decline and Fall, which was soon followed by Vile Bodies (1930), Black Mischief (1932), A Handful of Dust (1934) and Scoop (1938). Waugh travelled extensively and also wrote several travel books, as well as a biography of Edmund Campion and Ronald Knox. Other famous works include his Sword of Honour trilogy, and Brideshead Revisited (1945).