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Wednesday, March 01, 2017

"Blue Highways" Book Review


Greatly enjoyed this book, the first of three in a travel series. Sure, it's dated by now (first published in 1982), but it's interesting to use this as a landmark of sorts, to mark how things have changed over the years--and how some things never seem to change. 

Felt very much "along for the ride" in his van, "Ghost Dancing." His periods of insight and reflection were refreshing from the sense that here's a man who made a trip--he did not simply take one. In solitude, he thought and in writing, he shares many introspective discoveries. These were the best parts of the trip in reading the book; however, of all the place and people Heat-Moon meets, he seems to be followed by the "same cast of characters" (as it were). No matter where he visits, everyone speaks with the author's voice, with the same kind of whit and humor. Occasionally he seems to be condescending or takes a mocking tone but one could chalk that up to road-weariness. One is confident the author met real people but it's too bad he does not let them speak for themselves. 

Overall, an enjoyable and very distracting read.

Paperback, 428 pages
Published October 19th 1999 by Back Bay Books (first published 1982)
Original Title: Blue Highways: A Journey into America
ISBN: 0316353299 (ISBN13: 9780316353298)

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