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Ghost Towns of Route 66 Hardcover – June 6, 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 72 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The quintessential boom-and-bust highway of the American West, Route 66 once hosted a thriving array of boomtowns built around oil mines, railroad stops, cattle ranches, resorts, stagecoach stops, and gold mines. Illustrated with gorgeous sepia-tone and color photography, this book tours dozens of ghost towns, rich in stories and history. Explore the beauty and nostalgia of these abandoned communities along America’s favorite highway!

About the Author

Since his childhood, Jim Hinckley dreamed of being an author. After numerous detours into truck driving, mining, ranching, and a variety of other endeavors, he turned to writing a weekly column on automotive history for his local newspaper, the Kingman Daily Miner, in his adopted hometown of Kingman, Arizona.

From that initial endeavor more than twenty years ago, Hinckley has written extensively on his two primary passions: automotive history and travel. He is a regular contributor to Route 66, American Road, Hemmings Classic Car, and Old Cars Weekly, and he was an associate editor at Cars & Parts. Book reviews and original features on automotive history and travel can be found on his blog, www.route66chronicles.blogspot.com and on his popular podcast, Jim Hinckley's America & Route 66 Adventures.

Kerrick James has been a professional photographer for more than twenty years. He specializes in travel imagery, and he is a regular contributor to Arizona Highways, Sunset, National Geographic Adventure, and Alaska Airlines Magazine. He lives in Mesa, Arizona.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Voyageur Press; First edition (June 6, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0760338434
  • ISBN-13: 978-0760338438
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.8 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,934 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By WichacpiHoskila VINE VOICE on June 7, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I have awaited this book's release for months, and on the day it came out--June 6, 2011--I finally bought the one copy at my local bookstore (you know the ones we still have to support or they'll be gone like Route 66). I was NOT disappointed. "Ghost Towns of Route 66" is crammed with gorgeous photos, and not just the small playing-card size that too many R66 books try to get away with. No, these are usually large, and most are in color. The author writes concise and interesting notes about the scenes (Hinckley and James have collaborated on other projects before this one, and they work well together), and the book shows a great knowledge of the subject without being dense with minutiae. What I've found most enjoyable in the 24 hours I've had this book (remember, it just came out yesterday) is reading it alongside my laptop and exploring each site online for more photos and information (if I had one critique of the book it'd be that I want MORE of it--double the pages, and more stories of the sites--can we have a Volume 2?). I mean, come on, it combines ghost towns and Route 66--you can't lose! There are a LOT of books that print photos of the R66 kitsch, but this one gives you the sense that you may be seeing parts of Route 66 that won't last much longer, and the author/photographer are capturing treasures that are slipping away. I love Route 66, and I love ghost town photo books, but this book is superior to the gazillion other rushed Route 66 "product" souvenir books.
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Format: Hardcover
The first thing that I noticed when I first flipped through Ghost Towns was the attractive layout. It makes you want to go deeper into the book. Writer Jim Hinckley and photographer Kerrick James and their layout team have done an excellent job of melding content and visuals. The current and vintage photographs provide a good addition to Hinckley's writing on the current and historical aspects of Route 66.

The book is organized with chapters on each of the eight Route 66 states in geographical order. Ghost towns were created by road changes, economic woes, and, as in Times Beach, Mo, environmental issues. Although the book focuses on what is no more along the route, there are also glimpses of life and renewal. In his writing, Hinckley pays homage to earlier books about locations on Route 66, so the reader gets a good overview of other Route 66 writing and resources. I am sure that readers familiar with certain areas will think one area should have been covered and another area not covered, but, overall, Hinckley's research provides a good panorama of the road that was.

Things that I liked:
*Great photos and integration with text
*When You Go boxes throughout the book that give directional information
*Don't Miss shield graphics that describe just that
*Bits of local history that enrich the reader's knowledge of Route 66
*Suggestions for further reading at the end of the book
*A nice index

Overall, I find the book a good combination of history and visuals for the reader that should create interest in Route 66.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a great book filling a gap in the "what to see" when taking the Route 66 journey. While most books about Route 66 touch on the rapidly disappearing sights on the 'Mother Road', none of them deals with the 'Ghost Town' aspects as well or as completely as 'Ghost Towns'. We have made the entire journey once, and have plans in the works to once again experience the Route. This book is a very welcome addition to our library and will be of great help in helping us focus on, and find, the places we are seeking. We highly recommend this read, whether you plan to take the trip, or just like to read some history of this great, old road.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book very interesting and well written. The pictures are fabulous and it is a big hit in our gift store, " Connie's Shoppe at the Historic Wagon Wheel Motel on rte 66.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The layout and flow of the text in the digital (Kindle) edition of this book is inconsistent (see attached screenshots) — at times, text appears against a yellow or black background, sometimes without any margin between the virtual page and the box — not a great reading experience. The book (content) itself is great; however, I recommend going with the print edition instead for now. Hopefully, this digital edition will be fixed at some time soon.
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By Len on February 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm a big 66 fan and I love this book. I've been to many of the places in the book and didn't know about many more. Makes me anxious to take a trip and see what I've missed. I learned so much more about the towns and the people that built the Mother Road.
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By Puck on September 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is beautiful , the images are striking , I cant wait for next year to do Route 66 after seeing a snapshot of what awaits me . It is so great to see some of the highlights of a trip ive planned my whole life for . The only fault is there isnt quite enough description of pictures , but saying that its one of the best books ive seen on the route
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you love history and Route 66 this book will inform and guide to the remains of towns once found on the Mother Road. These towns were important to early travelers and their history came and went with the alignment and realignments of this great highway. This is a must book for those that want to learn about or visit the original Route 66.
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