Summer Reads for Travel Inspiration

Get ready to travel without ever leaving home.

"Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are." Mason Cooley

Remember traveling - that pass time we all used to enjoy with friends, family, or even solo? COVID-19 might have altered our travel plans for the foreseeable future, but that doesn't mean we still can't go on a fantastic journey. So much about traveling involves experiencing something new, whether it be a new location, culture, or perspective, and books can provide the same experience.

Travel guides are essential for pre-travel research, and are usually curated by people who have extensive experience in the location giving you a real sense of where to eat, sleep, and offer ideas about things to do. Non-fiction books are just as crucial to the travel experience; however, they can also spark your imagination about a location and give you an insight into places you have never been before.

Our friends from River Oaks Bookstore have selected three books that will spark some serious wanderlust. Get ready to travel without ever leaving your home.

In a Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson

Even though Australia harbors many things that can kill you in extremely nasty ways, including sharks, crocodiles, snakes, even riptides and deserts, Bill Bryson adores the place, and he takes his readers on a rollicking ride far beyond that beaten tourist path. Wherever he goes, he finds Australians who are cheerful, extroverted, and unfailingly kind. 

Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck

To hear the speech of the real America, to smell the grass and the trees, to see the colors and the light—these were John Steinbeck's goals as he set out, at the age of fifty-eight, to rediscover the country he had been writing about for so many years.

With Charley, his French poodle, Steinbeck drives the interstates and the country roads, dines with truckers, encounters bears at Yellowstone, and old friends in San Francisco. Along the way, he reflects on the American character, racial hostility, and the unexpected kindness of strangers.

West with the Night by Beryl Markham 

If the first responsibility of a memoirist is to lead a life worth writing about, Markham succeeded beyond all measure. Born Beryl Clutterbuck in the middle of England, she and her father moved to Kenya when she was a girl, and she grew up with a zebra for a pet; horses for friends; and baboons, lions, and gazelles for neighbors. She made money by scouting elephants from a tiny plane, and most of her life was spent in East Africa as an adventurer, a racehorse trainer, and a pilot. 

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