You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe

Books

Book review

‘The Last Train to Zona Verde’ by Paul Theroux

Remember your favorite grandparent — the one who was smart, sweet, funny, and wise, if a bit cranky and repetitive? “The Last Train to Zona Verde,” Paul Theroux’s latest (and, the 72-year-old hints, his last) major travel book, is a lot like that.

Now, before the charges of ageism start flying, understand that Theroux likely would embrace this comparison. In fact, if “The Last Train” is a book about Africa, it’s also a book about growing old — about the positives and negatives of both. Theroux’s travel writing, as he once wrote in “The Great Railway Bazaar,” blends fiction, journalism, and autobiography. It makes sense that in this new book Theroux’s age becomes a character, a thing rattling around amid the rail cars, even when he doesn’t actually intend it.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week