Jane Wilson-Howarth

Non Fiction Books


Travel Narratives

People fascinate me. Perhaps that is why I love working as a GP. When I travel, I always want to ask questions and know what life is really like for everyone I meet. Sadly, I am not much of a linguist but I smile and gesticulate a great deal and make the effort to communicate. Given enough time, it is remarkable how connections can be made

I explore, try to understand and write about difficult issues including corruption, prejudice, exploitation, caste and poverty. I know that for some this makes uncomfortable reading and even risks demystifying and undermining the image some travellers have of the simple natural existence of the rural poor in emerging nations. Nevertheless I fervently believe these issues should be understood by all who travel so my aim is to present the facts as sympathetic engaging stories about real people. I am frustrated by the look-and-point approach to travel, but I hope I don't preach. I write of my adventures and enthusiasms and of colour and beauty so that my readers can enjoy my travel experiences as much as I do.

Travel Health Guides

Within minutes of arriving in the sleepy town of Khairpur in Sindh, I was faced with a medical crisis. I'd been qualified as a doctor for a few years but was new to expatriate life, and I was travelling with my firstborn, three-month-old son. A guy who was expecting to work with my husband announced that he needed to be evacuated because he was desperately ill. I introduced myself as a GP and offered help. Quickly I realised that my new friend was not suffering from some horrendous tropical pox but that he just had a nasty attack of sinusitis. It made him feel awful with frontal headache that recalled having a screwdriver rammed into his eyeball. Labelling it with a diagnosis made it less scary, though, and we found that the correct antibiotics were readily available over the counter in the local bazaar. By the next day my patient was well on the way to recovery.

That was the first time I really had to think about travel health. What this, my first real travel medicine ‘case’, made me realise is that even the calmest and most sensible of travellers will nearly always become disproportionately worried about themselves when taken ill. In my friend’s case, he didn’t know much about the local health service and didn’t know where he could find a doctor he could trust. He just wanted to get home to his friendly British GP. That experience showed me how liberating and empowering information can be and motivated me to start writing accessible straightforward travel health advice. I began work on a manual that was distributed amongst expatriate engineers, and soon after wrote my first travel health feature for Wanderlust magazine. It was - of course - on diarrhoea.



Your Child Abroad: a travel health guide

“Useful… down-to-earth… practical… reassuring… how to deal with everything from sunburn to scorpion bites…. full of excellent advice that will be appreciated not only by parents but by most adult travellers too.”

Bird Watching magazine

Lemurs of the Lost World

“very readable book… clearly demonstrates that idealistic adventurers still exist.”

The Friend

How to Shit Around the World

Even if you never venture forth to "go" into the wild, this is a great read. Dr. Wilson-Howarth's style is very, very entertaining. The trouble is, you'll have all these fascinating titbits of conversation starters, but when to use them?

"redhamlet" (Natick, MA US) posted on amazon.com

A Glimpse of Eternal Snows

I'm immersed in writing about mothering young children with disabilities (specifically vision impairment, but most of them have/had other conditions), and by night in bed I'm reading your book, which is fantastic, and gives me a whole extra level of insight, especially the first part about the health services. The different themes in the book come together brilliantly, David, Nepal, the health issues, the family, Simon's work, the wildlife, etc, and make it a really good read.

Ellie, Oxford