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Recommended (and not) travel reading

Posted Jun 24 2012 8:00am
I read quite a lot of travel/memoir.
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I recently filled you in on how much I enjoyed Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail . As for other travel/journey/memoirs, some are equally entertaining and some are... well...

Let's be honest, sometimes there's a dud.

Last week I wasted 5 bucks on  LIVING LIKE A LOCAL: Stories of Our Life in France . Reading that "book" was like reading a diary. A poorly written diary. A poorly written diary in which the phrase "couldn't be better" pops up often. (Really, are there that many things that "couldn't be better?") And the passive voice pervades the text: "There were posters around town..." "The movie was shown..."

The CAPS LOCK in the title should have been my first clue...

That said, there are plenty of excellent tales to be read. A couple of travel books I've loved
  • Chickens, Mules and Two Old Fools  is the tale of a couple that packs up and moves from London to Andalucia, managing to chuckle their way through linguistic and cultural barriers while adopting half a dozen chickens along the way.
  • I'm not an Alcoholic, I'm just European!  is the story of a widower who leaves his housebound life behind to move to Madrid. The book benefits greatly from the author's sense of wonder as he opens up to a world he once only watched on television.
Combined, those two books made me want to pack my own suitcase and move to Spain.

What books have you loved (or loathed) lately?

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