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Jonathan Riff of Otok Creative is set to launch his 1st Book, When The Tourists Leave

Jonathan appears to have an instinctive knack for knowing the raw ingredients which cook up the most captivating travel books

News18

Updated:August 14, 2019, 5:11 PM IST
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Jonathan Riff of Otok Creative is set to launch his 1st Book, When The Tourists Leave
Jonathan appears to have an instinctive knack for knowing the raw ingredients which cook up the most captivating travel books
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People often make the mistake of concluding that a travel book is simply an illustrated guide to a certain region’s landmarks, points of interests, and geographical hot-spots. They couldn’t be more wrong. If a travel book is to capture the hearts and minds of its readers, it needs one thing above everything else - a good story.

When you break it down to its bare essence, traveling is all about the journey. In physi-cal terms it’s how we get from ‘A’ to ‘B,’ but in spiritual, emotional, and intellectual terms, the journey is can change us as people, teaching us life lessons as we wander our way through the world.

A good travel book should contain a narrative that’s as plotted and full of significance as an engaging novel. It should reveal how the protagonists makes sense and find a richer meaning in the chaos of everyday life, as they set sail on a once-in-a-lifetime voyage of discovery.

Jonathan Riff is a nomad, entrepreneur and author, and he is all set to launch his new book later this year. The book is a real-life, often humorous, and always engaging ac-count of Jonathan and his wife Megan’s adventure in Croatia. It's a tale of how the cou-ple from Los Angeles decided to throw caution to the wind, uproot their lives, and chase their dream of running a boutique hotel on the Adriatic Coast.

If his debut’ When The Tourists Leave’ is anything to go by, Jonathan appears to have an instinctive knack for knowing the raw ingredients which cook up the most captivating travel books.

The story is all about battling bureaucracy, keeping the faith, and staying true to your grand vision. In Jonathan and Megan’s case, that vision involved taking over an old Communist Social House and lovingly restoring it into an 18 room Boutique Hotel named The Admiral Zaton.

As the book proves, it was no easy task. Along the way the Riffs, aided and abetted by their loyal dog Sailor, met a colorful array of interesting and memorable characters - some friendly, some not so, as they befriend new neighbors, slayed skepticism, and at-tempted to master the Croatian tongue.

Getting a hotel off the ground is no easy task, but in a foreign country, it’s an uphill struggle at its very best. The fact that the Riffs succeed, and succeed with honors, makes ‘When The Tourists Leave’ a worthy read about living and working in Croatia.

That fact that the book has been written at all is a chance product of a simple twist of fate. Jonathan, a business and tourism development and management graduate, went backpacking to Croatia in 2006 and fell heads over heels in love with the country. Ten years later he returned and began living the episodic life which would form the basis for his book, this is what makes ‘When The Tourists Leave’ such a page-turning read.

The book captures the nuances of humor, wit, and tenacity needed to make it in a strange place far from home. Most importantly, ‘When The Tourists Leave’ is a testa-ment to how travel can change you for the better, and the importance of staying true to your grand vision.

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