9 Books that take you on a ROAD TRIP
Do you consider yourself 'stuck at home'? Looking for an escape? How about a quick road trip? Even though you shouldn't actually hit the road right now, we can do a little armchair traveling. A few shorter stories, a variety of genres, a few backlist items to bring to your attention and a couple newer books - something for everyone. I put together a list of recommended books I've read that will take you on a road trip (arranged shortest to longest). Where do you feel like going?
Winterdance by Gary Paulsen
Published 1996, 272 pages
This is the outstanding story of a man who, on a whim, decides to participate in the Iditarod. He buys dogs, trains them, transports them and all the gear to Alaska, and runs the Iditarod. This book is entertaining and enlightening and I've given lots of copies as gifts and recommend it as often as I can. It's a road trip you'll never forget!
Dogtripping by David Rosenfelt
Published 2013, 278 pages
Can you imagine a road trip with 25 dogs? Mystery writer Rosenfelt and his wife did it when they moved from California to Maine with their 25 rescue dogs. He tells the story of the trip (using 3 RVs and 11 volunteers) with SO much humor and warmth. His background is inspiring as he and his wife have rescued thousands of dogs over the years, mostly older dogs or dogs with disabilities or illnesses.
To Night Owl from Dogfish by Holly Goldberg Sloan and Meg Wolitzer
Genre: YA, General Fiction
Published 2019, 304 pages
This delightful story about two tween girls living on opposite coasts whose dads fall in love and want them all to be a family. The girls resist. They travel cross country and meet in the middle. They become fast friends. Told in letters/emails between the girls, between adults, back and forth, creates a virtual road trip as the girls learn about each other and what makes a family.
The Lion is In by Delia Ephron
Genre: General Fiction
Published 2012, 304 pages
What a fun story! Two young women on an escapist road trip pick up an older woman hitchhiker. The trio gets stranded in a small town with a circus lion and fun ensues!
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce
Genre: General Fiction
Published 2012, 320 pages
A 600-mile walk of a road trip! Harold goes to the mailbox to mail a letter to a dying friend......and decides to keep walking. Along the way he meets a full cast of characters that revive memories, regrets, and joys as he walks along. A quiet, thought-provoking story with such a satisfying ending.
A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher
Published 2019, 365 pages
Another walking road trip, this one is set in a dystopian future and happens as a boy tries to regain his stolen dog. Lots of action, almost a coming-of-age story as the kid learns about himself, a surprising twist to blow your mind!
Freedom Road by William Lashner
Genre: General Fiction, Edgar Award nominee 2020
Published 2019, 377 pages
This story is about a cantakerous man (but not fun quirky like Ove) released from prison who discovers granddaughter in trouble so he sets off on road trip to find/help her; an interesting read with an unlikely, crabby character that I liked.
Good Omens by Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman
Published 1990, 412 pages
A demon and angel team up to try to save the world from the Anti-Christ in this fanciful, humorous tale of a road trip. The two are madly racing cross country trying to find the missing Anti-Christ before he ruins the world and along the way meet a wide array of characters and encounter all sorts of obstacles. Humor and societal commentary intertwine for a very satisfying read.
The Knife of Never Letting Go #1 by Patrick Ness
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Published 2008, 479 pages
Creative, action packed, engaging, and a totally unexpected pleasure to read. Young Todd is raised in a town of only men who can all hear each other's thoughts - it's a noisy place. His road trip takes place as he's trying to escape the town where he lives. He takes off cross country with his thinking-out-loud dog (an excellent character) and a young girl he meets along the way. This road trip is adventure filled but also tackles some deeper themes. Reviewed here.
Hopefully one of these armchair road trip books grabs your interest and helps take you far, far away. Did you choose one of the walking trips or a fanciful one? Do you have a favorite road trip book you can recommend to me? You know I'm always open to a good suggestion! Let's Talk Books.