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Recommended reading for the road
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Dampcamper
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Years ago when the family was young, I read the kids "The Hobbit" as a bedtime story while we were camping in the '63 bus. It seemed less like fiction when we were out in the dark woods with just a candle lantern to read by.
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realfstkid
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lots of really great suggestions in this thread. I've tacked a few to the end of my ever longer "must read" list.

Definitely have to +1 on Walden, Desert Solitaire, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and On The Road.

As for ones I didn't see mentioned in there, The Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiesson is a great read, which could also be called "Zen and the Art of Trekking in Nepal". The two books share a common thread in the spiritual regard, and both have much to offer. Having just traveled a bit in Nepal, I may find it more relatable than most, but it's great for those that wander and think too much...

Also, for those that enjoyed A Walk in the Woods, Wild by Cheryl Strayed is a great book about a young woman's solo trek along the Pacific Crest Trail. It's an easy read, but enjoyable, especially for those solo travelers who need a story with which to empathize.

This one always brings me pause to recommend, because it's plot is sinister, however the prose is that of sheer beauty: Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov. This book is more poetic than any other novel I've come across.

Another one for those wandering hobos—I mean travelers—who have a lot of free time on their hands: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, is about an Australian convict who flees to India after escaping from Prison. It's a fictional work based on a true story (people are fictional, events are real) that mixes adventure, love, and philosophy in a quick 1,000 pages...

Lastly, this is one of my all time favorites: A Portait of Myself. It's an autobiography of Margaret Bourke-White, one of the first staff photographers for Life and Fortune Magazines, in the early 20th century. Her story is one of innumerable adventures the likes of which you generally reserve for fiction. What an incredible person.

As for the paper book vs e-reader debate, I'm constantly torn, as I am with film vs digital photography. As with many others I'm sure, I once vowed that I would not succumb to such convenience at the cost of the aesthetic and palpable beauty that is an old book, replete with the wonderful smell of dust and wood shelving. But my job flings me to faraway places, often for months at a time, and I've succumbed to the Kindle.

My compromise has been that I only read new, "cheap" books, like that Gates book "Duty", or Buffet's son's "40 Chances", on the Kindle. For all the books I read for pleasure and my own personal enrichment, such as Snow Leopard, or Zen..., or Portait of Myself, I have ample space to jot my notes and ruminations in the margins of those dusty, sweet smelling pages.
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Steve M.
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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Tarzan of the Apes" by E. R. Burroughs of all things. His writing in this series was the typical style of the early 1900's. In other words he really paints a scene with his words.
His "John Carter of Mars" trilogy was for me an awful read. It was like he was a totally different person doing the writing.

Another series of novels written by Douglas Reeman (using the pseudonym Alexander Kent) about the Royal Navy in the days of sail with the hero being Richard Bolitho.
It took me a few years of searching the second-hand book stores to track down the entire set.

Novels of the series- Title -Publication -date -ISBN Internal chronology
Richard Bolitho, Midshipman 1975 ISBN 0-399-61004-9 1772
Midshipman Bolitho and the Avenger 1978 ISBN 0-399-20652-3 1773
Band of Brothers 2006 ISBN 0-434-01010-3 1774
Stand into Danger 1980 ISBN 0-09-925380-1 1774
In Gallant Company 1977 ISBN 0-09-916970-3 1777
Sloop of War 1972 ISBN 0-09-908820-7 1778
To Glory We Steer[3] 1968 ISBN 978-0-09-952786-2 1782
Command a King's Ship 1973 ISBN 978-0-09-954985-7 1784
Passage To Mutiny 1976 ISBN 978-0-09-126330-0 1789
With All Despatch 1988 ISBN 978-0-09-949388-4 1792
Form Line of Battle 1969 ISBN 978-0-09-908850-9 1793
Enemy in Sight! 1970 ISBN 0-09-905520-1 1794
Flag Captain 1971 ISBN 0-09-907180-0 1797
Signal – Close Action! 1974 ISBN 0-09-912940-X 1798
The Inshore Squadron 1978 ISBN 0-09-134580-4 1800
A Tradition of Victory 1981 ISBN 978-0-09-949767-7 1801
Success to the Brave 1983 ISBN 0-09-936370-4 1802
Colours Aloft! 1986 ISBN 978-0-09-954339-8 1803
Honour This Day 1987 ISBN 978-0-09-954341-1 1804
The Only Victor 1990 ISBN 0-330-31840-3 1806
Beyond The Reef 1992 ISBN 0-330-31957-4 1808
The Darkening Sea 1993 ISBN 0-330-32917-0 1809
For My Country's Freedom 1995 ISBN 0-330-34474-9 1811
Cross of St. George 1996 ISBN 978-0-09-949773-8 1813
Sword of Honour 1998 ISBN 0-09-942168-2 1814
Second to None 1999 ISBN 0-09-928059-0 1815
Relentless Pursuit 2001 ISBN 978-0-434-00884-1 1815
Man of War 2003 ISBN 978-0-434-01008-0 1817
Heart of Oak 2007 ISBN 978-0-434-01351-7 1818
In the King's Name 2011 ISBN 978-1-84605-543-0 1819
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thatvwbusguy
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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Art of Racing In the Rain by Garth Stein is a great read, especially if you are a dog lover. Be forewarned though, unless you are dead inside you are gonna cry.

Buried In the Sky by Peter Zuckerman and Amanda Padoan, about the 2008 disaster on K2 is a recent favorite as well.
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Christopher Schimke
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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

veloandy wrote:
I just finished The Martian by Andy Weir. It's about an astronaut left for dead on Mars with no radio and several weeks of supplies.

The next mission to Mars is scheduled to touch down in 4 years, 3200 km away. The astronaut has to figure out how to survive for 4 years, get in touch with Earth, and rendezvous with the next mission.

Luckily he is the mission's botanist and mechanical engineer...

It's a TOTALLY engrossing fun read that continuously reminded me of adventures I've had with my westy. I'm sure it will speak to other Sambanistas too.


I enjoyed that book too. I could really relate to that guy.
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veloandy
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PostPosted: Thu May 29, 2014 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just finished The Martian by Andy Weir. It's about an astronaut left for dead on Mars with no radio and several weeks of supplies.

The next mission to Mars is scheduled to touch down in 4 years, 3200 km away. The astronaut has to figure out how to survive for 4 years, get in touch with Earth, and rendezvous with the next mission.

Luckily he is the mission's botanist and mechanical engineer...

It's a TOTALLY engrossing fun read that continuously reminded me of adventures I've had with my westy. I'm sure it will speak to other Sambanistas too.
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LemonCove
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I prefer classics, and always have a stack of books to read that my Westcapades allow me time for.

I'm really not an audio book guy (I prefer to play DJ and match music to the road, weather, and scenery), but I was once given a Tony Hillerman mystery . . . really was fun to listen to while traveling through the Navajo and Hopi reservations.

As far as "always in the van," besides the Bentley, I also concur with Sibleys NA Birds (I also carry binocs).

BTW, I also still prefer paper, and recommend Powells.com for folks that just can't warm to amazon or B &N.

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blemon
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fleet_maintenance wrote:
blemon wrote:
I read One Steppe Beyond: Across Russia in a VW Camper this Winter. It's by Thom Wheeler. It's an interesting story and a quick read.


Regardless, it made for a funny coincidence. An interesting, and quick read.


That's very cool. I love it when stuff like that happens.

Wheeler has a nice blog I just found: http://www.thomwheeler.net/
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fleet_maintenance
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2014 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

blemon wrote:
I read One Steppe Beyond: Across Russia in a VW Camper this Winter. It's by Thom Wheeler. It's an interesting story and a quick read.


I'm a couple thousand miles away from my Westy right now, and on my honeymoon in Jamaica. Over casual conversation with strangers on the beach, the English/German couple sitting next to us mentioned they had just finished a copy of this book (from their local library, in Herfordshire (sp?) England, no less) and lent it to me for the day. They did not strike me as bus people, BTW.

While the bus in the story (Max) was a "main character", the story was not about Max, specifically. Moreso, it was about traveling "bus-style" (not 100% reliable, loose itinerary, ready for breakdown, but full of blind faith-in-a-foreign-country style)

Regardless, it made for a funny coincidence. An interesting, and quick read.
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childofthewind
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My latest addition to this list; I found a used Penguin of what I think is John Muir's best.

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blemon
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read One Steppe Beyond: Across Russia in a VW Camper this Winter. It's by Thom Wheeler. It's an interesting story and a quick read.


I loved Wall to Wall: From Beijing to Berlin by Rail by Mary Morris. It's about her trip on the Trans-Siberian Railway weeks after Chernobyl. Her work is really incredible.


If you like shorter pieces, I recommend the Best American Travel Writing anthologies. I haven't read them all but I thought Cahill and Theroux both put together a nice collection. I especially like the essays in the Susan Orlean edition.

Speaking of Orlean, The Orchid Thief is great. I preferred the book to the movie.
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16CVs Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My favorite travel which book which always stays in my bag is "How to win friends and influence people "
Other less heavy books - I enjoyed "Letters to Zerky" Though a sad ending . " Wide Eyed wanderers " got me through Europe one year .
Any biographies are always fun . I've read , Honda ,Delorean ,Iaccoca ,Sam Winston ,Smokey Unick , Steve Jobs .

Stacy
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msinabottle
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 2:29 pm    Post subject: Well, for Starters (Or other parts)... Reply with quote

Well, for starters, there are...

Mine...

http://www.robricebooks.com/

I mean, some of you have said that you like my prose, and that sort of thing... Winston hasn't appeared in them... He may, yet!

What I've been reading the most in Winston, as I think about it, are FREE out-of-copyright books from Project Gutenberg or Archive.org on my Kindle. Things like ooooooold autobiographies, lots and lots of Dickens, vintage fantasies by George MacDonald, Kipling, some FIRST HAND stuff about the Civil War... There's this program:

http://calibre-ebook.com/about

which can turn almost any file into something you can read on things from your tablet computer to your smart phone. It's also good with an E-reader that you can take a LOT of books with you on the road and take up almost no space at all.

Traveling and resting in Winston has given me precious moments just to get caught up on my primal joy of reading.

Best!
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Car That Brought You Here Still Runs - By Frances McCue ...
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

riceye wrote:
If you are heading for Yellowstone NP this will give you a refreshing new respect for the park.

http://www.amazon.com/Death-Yellowstone-Accidents-Foolhardiness-National/dp/1570980217
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Possibly inspired by:

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Grim reading in the schadenfreude vein. Hikers may take heart that (as far as I can recall) none of the many Canyon deaths was a prepared hiker who walked over the edge. Sadly, the long list includes a relative of mine (58 years ago).
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61Scout
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vermontgirl wrote:
61Scout wrote:

Next on deck is an old Euell Gibbons book.

-Kevin


Yes! I love Stalking the Wild Asparagus.


I've got a bunch of Euell Gibbons lined up, including Stalking the Wild Asparagus. Glad it's got your thumbs up approval, VG. A Beachcomber's Guide is what's on deck.

To each their own, but I'm not sure about getting an e-reader personally. Ignoring all the economics/space/convenience factors for a moment... there's just something nice about a real, tangible, book. And I'm the type of person to pass on books to friends after reading them. I suppose I could do that with a PDF file, but it wouldn't be the same. I see e-readers as book simulators. Sometimes, there's just nothing like the real thing.

On another note, if you're part of the "real book only" crowd, Ebay is an excellent source for used books. Goodwill regularly puts up books for 3-5 dollars online, shipping included.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

61Scout wrote:

Next on deck is an old Euell Gibbons book.

-Kevin


Yes! I love Stalking the Wild Asparagus.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Desert Solitaire by Ed Abbey pretty much lives in my van as well as any poetry by W.S. Merwin, Robert Bly, Mary Oliver.

Recently read Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why by Laurence Gonzales and really enjoyed it. Anything by Jon Krakauer.

Oh - if you're around Kings Canyon NP (or have spent any time there) this book is fascinating & haunting: http://www.powells.com/biblio/9780060583002
(support your local bookstore!!)
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

riceye wrote:
If you are heading for Yellowstone NP this will give you a refreshing new respect for the park.

http://www.amazon.com/Death-Yellowstone-Accidents-Foolhardiness-National/dp/1570980217
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A Yellowstone Park Ranger recommended this book to my daughter while we were there...She read it cover-to-cover and loved it.
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riceye
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are heading for Yellowstone NP this will give you a refreshing new respect for the park.

http://www.amazon.com/Death-Yellowstone-Accidents-Foolhardiness-National/dp/1570980217
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