The Dragon Run
Two Canadians, Ten Bhutanese, One Stray Dog
From the mystical kingdom of Bhutan, a memoir about running, teaching, and what really matters.
Brit by origin, Canuck by marriage, Tony Robinson-Smith couldn’t imagine that he, his wife, 10 Bhutanese college students, and a dog would end up running 578 kilometres (360 miles) across the Himalayas to send kids to school. In early 2006, he arrived in the little-known kingdom of Bhutan to work as an English instructor. A casual conversation led him to take part in “Tara-thon,” a run to raise money for the queen of Bhutan’s charitable foundation. In Bhutan—the country that originated the concept of Gross Domestic Happiness and which remains enigmatic to Westerners—Robinson-Smith discovered he had much to learn. Armchair travellers and anyone who enjoys a good story will love The Dragon Run, a new travel memoir from the man who brought us Back in 6 Years, his story about circling the earth without ever leaving the ground.
A worthy addition to the canon of running memoirs. An unprecedented journey across a singular spiritual landscape, enlivened by Robinson-Smith’s keen eye for detail, beautiful prose, and remarkable endurance. A travelogue that takes seriously its responsibility to its hosts. Thoughtful, mindful, compelling.- Award Committee
"Robinson-Smith's account of the Tara-thon is lively, richly detailed and unvarnished. .. [The] imagination is caught by what Robinson-Smith reveals about the society itself, Bhutan's history, the wary insularity of its mountain fastness, the harsh demands of life there, the delightfully appealing economic measure known as Gross National Happiness, and the effects, good and bad, of increased contact with the modern world. " Richard Cumyn, The Fiddlehead, November 2018- Richard Cumyn
"Travel writing in Canada is alive, well, and robustly athletic. ... Robinson-Smith does a good job of juxtaposing Western perceptions, both historic and modern, with the challenges faced by the Bhutanese. .." [Full review at http://canlit. ca/article/running-and-riding-away/]- Zöe Landale