John Robinson comes from a family of teachers. And they taught him to be observant. They just didn't realize what he would end up studying. In a bizarre experiment that lasted 13 years, he drove every mile of every road on his state highway map. In two insightful books, he recorded what he saw.
You can follow his journey, and find his favorite spots. But these books are not travel guides. They're commentaries on life. He penetrated beyond the edges of civilization, peeked into the real American heartland, and lived to tell about it.
His books are "on the road" adventures blending local characters and mom-and-pop food into an archipelago of tasty stories. He dives deep into the wilderness, where the nearest neighbors are coyotes, and the bullfrogs sound like banjo strings.
When an interviewer asked if he ever "heard banjo music," John replied, "Sure, all the time. And when I do, I grab a big bass fiddle and join in."
Through all his travels, John shows a deep respect for history, and for the environment. As a former state director of tourism, he heard the question a lot: How can we balance tourism and the environment? His answer: "If we don't preserve our natural heritage, and put back what we take out, these attractions won't be worth visiting."
Called the "King of the Road" by Missouri Life Magazine, John Robinson lives in Columbia, Missouri when he isn't sleeping in his car. His articles and columns are regularly featured in a half dozen magazines.