On the Page: Favourite Travel Reads (Part One)
The summer season – a time for travelling, relaxing, lounging by the beach and, most of all, a time for literature. The LMPR team recognizes that nothing is better than enjoying the hot weather with a good book, and in tribute to this summer’s final days, we’re sharing our favourite travel inspired reads.
In part one of this two part series we travel to Indonesia and all over North America:
Sarah Cruickshank – Adventures in Solitude by Grant Lawrence
A beautiful writer and fascinating individual, Grant Lawrence’s Adventures in Solitude is one of my all-time favourite travel-inspired reads. Combining wit and intrigue into a beautifully crafted memoir, this paperback narrates Grant’s experiences at his family’s wilderness cabin in Desolation Sound. As Grant describes, this remote, wild, and magical area off the west coast of British Columbia can be both a paradise and a nightmare – depending on the time of year you visit.
Filled with enchanting stories from Grant’s awkward adolescent years through to adulthood, this book reminds me of my own childhood travels through the southern BC coast, exploring hidden islands, discovering fascinating creatures, and meeting unique and colourful people along the way.
Rachel Lowry – Everyday Indonesian by Thomas Oey
I was extremely fortunate to be invited to travel to Bali and perform on trumpet alongside the extraordinary gamelan ensemble, Çudamani. Having studied gamelan for only two years at the time, I was eager to observe and learn from the musicians; to facilitate communication, I began formally studying Bahasa Indonesia right away.
One of the books that became my go-to was Everyday Indonesian by Thomas G. Oey. Mining through the plethora of language books on the market, what I liked most about this simple, transportable book was the practical layout progressing from basic pronunciation to grammar to relevant vocabulary – small talk, transportation, food/drink – culminating in a handy English-Indonesian/Indonesian-English dictionary. In addition, there were useful tips, photos, and cultural notes sprinkled throughout.
Brian Paterson – On the Road by Jack Kerouac
There are many great contenders when it comes to travel and literature – but I think I have to go with my first impulse and say Jack Kerouac’s On the Road (and not just because it’s sitting above my computer).
By documenting the years he and his friends spent wildly traversing America, he not only succeeded in capturing and preserving a unique era of time- he tapped into profound universal truths about youth, friendship, rebellion, and self-discovery.
Set against a background of fast-flying blacktop, the novel is not only remarkable in in content, but in form. Kerouac’s prose is simply beautiful- and stands as testament to the remarkable use of language during the short, yet crucial, Beat Era.
Check back in next week for Part Two of LMPR’s Favourite Travel Reads!