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Road Fever Paperback – March 3, 1992
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From Library Journal
- Libby K. White, Sche nectady Cty. P.L., N.Y.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Where Cahill succeeds most here is in descriptive talent. From his conflicts with Sowerby to the smells of the inside of the vehicle to the terrain around him to the encounters with customs officials of a dozen nations, he never fails to paint a credible and interesting picture. Tim has always been good about telling the story even if it makes him look foolish, and this sense of literary integrity is strong here.
The only thing I felt a little shorted by was the virtual lack of any description of any activity between the US/Mexican border and Fairbanks. I can imagine them blazing across the US and Canada up to the Alcan in a day with no trouble, and maybe not much happened, but the real Alcan gets more interesting as you get into the Yukon and beyond; it seems it was glossed over. If I had a half-star markdown I might use it, but it wouldn't be fair to Cahill to mark him down a whole star on what is otherwise a great book--maybe not much really happened, which would explain why not much is said.
Recommended for adventure travel lovers, particularly those focused on South America.
Tim is his usual exuberant, one-of-guys, self-deprecating self. There is no one who can recount an anecdote with quite his flair. While speeding across Honduras, a flock of birds crossed the windshield while Cahill was driving. "Garry had snapped bolt upright from his slouching position in the passenger seat. He was holding his belly as if he had been shot. `Wah' he said in his strange, sleep clogged voice-----there seemed to be a dead bird in his lap. `I reached down there,' Garry said, `I felt something warm and wet. I was sure I had been shot. I thought I was feeling my own intestines. Then I started wondering why my intestines would have feathers and bird feet on them." Stories like this made me laugh aloud.
The book was nonetheless claustrophobic. By the time, Tim and Garry had reached Central America; my only thought was "let me out of this truck!" All but about 20 pages are devoted to South and Central America. The last 5,000 miles of the US, Canada and Alaska are barely mentioned. I suppose this is because the last third of the trip was without incident or terrors. But it did give the book an unbalanced feel. The section regarding how you get yourself considered for setting a Guinness Record was very interesting. Hint: If you plan on setting or beating a record, check with Guinness before (not after) you do it. There were about 35 pages devoted to how one went about getting sponsored, i.e., raising money (in this case about $350,000) that I found tedious.
The book was enjoyable for the most part, but I did get the impression Tim Cahill was as glad the trip was over as I was.
I would take issue with a comment by Rosseroo (below), however: I don't think enjoyment of these books is at all gender-specific; I'm a woman who is only sorry that she's read all of Cahill's books (I wish there were more!). And I haven't shared them with anyone, male or female, who didn't find them hilarious.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really enjoyed this book. I grew up in Lima and the Pan-American is a major artery in Peru, and the idea of one road traversing the whole of the Americas deeply impressed me. Read morePublished 6 months ago by J. Varner
Love Cahill - he throws in enough technical info so I feel like I've learned something (such as: I'm very happy to live in North America) and lots of funny, desperate, human... Read morePublished 7 months ago by cara b e
I have to say that I loved every word of this book and I can't wait to read it again. Yes, the first 100 pages or so (which is a lot, granted) are kind of slow slogging setting up... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Jeff Wignall
This is a very funny, well written travel account by a seasoned travel writer. The narrative follows the record-setting 24-day drive from Ushuaia at the southern tip of Argentina... Read morePublished 10 months ago by jurgfella
Sorry, I couldn't hang on long enough to even get through the rather tepid, boring first three chapters of pre-road rambling. Read morePublished 15 months ago by recent traveler to Oaxaca valleys
Great south America parts. Shot through the U.S. Too quickly. Maybe needed to be a bit longer to do the trip justice.Published 15 months ago by Douglas Philip Sackett
Fun to read. More into the politics of the trip than the actual road rally.Published 19 months ago by Janice Ekblad
Great read and so funny at times. Never knew there was a thing called "Adventure Racing." Tim Cahill is a skilled writer and makes the journey come alive.Published 20 months ago by Louisa Grove