April 24, 2014
Travelphan by Ryan Astaphan
Travelphan is a memoir for a mature young adult audience. By mature, I mean there is a lot of sex.
Travelphan documents Ryan’s struggles with injuries and his decision to take a trip to various places overseas including India and China. His intentions are to sort of find himself and try to train to be an athlete again.
The road is not easy, but he keeps his head high and he takes the readers through the good times and the struggles.
It starts off by detailing his life in the states and his experiences with sports. He ultimately ended up injuring his knee multiple times and had to have surgery. It was never the same after that and was pretty weak.
His decision to travel had a lot to do with wanting to get back into shape and start training again.
First, he stops off in India for a spiritual journey. I feel like his stop off here really gave him the mental strength to continue on to China and go through with the training.
Travelphan is written in a journal format. The chapters, or sections, were really short. It made reading a lot easier and more interesting. There were some that weren’t even half a page.
It felt like I picked up his journal right out of his room and started reading it. It was interesting, but I have always liked books that are written like that. Both fiction and non-fiction like this one was.
Despite some of the sexually explicit content, this was actually a very inspiring read. I haven’t torn my ACL, but I do have knee problems, and reading about Ryan pushing through his struggles was inspiring for me to do so as well!
It was fun, it was very interesting at times, and for a YA-directed memoir, it was written pretty well.
Memoirs are interesting because, by the end, you feel as though you really know the author even though you may have never talked to them. Ryan did a good job of presenting himself, his thoughts, and his problems. It was very relatable and could be read by any audience.
I overall enjoyed it, and I am glad that he pursued his dreams to train and ultimately get a book published.
If you enjoy travel or spiritual memoirs, or even just books that read like a personal journal, I would recommend this one.
Memorable Quote: "Those who are willing to sacrifice the most will enjoy life’s sweet nectar"