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Blue Highways: A Journey into America (1982)

por William Least Heat Moon

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

Séries: Travel Trilogy (1)

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3,343633,897 (4.05)138
Hailed as a masterpiece of American travel writing, Blue Highways is an unforgettable journey along our nation's backroads. William Least-Heat-Moon set out with little more than the need to put home behind him and a sense of curiosity about "those little towns that get on the map--if they get on at all--only because some cartographer has a blank space to fill: Remote, Oregon; Simplicity, Virginia; New Freedom, Pennsylvania; New Hope, Tennessee; Why, Arizona; Whynot Mississippi." His adventures, his discoveries, and his recollections of the extraordinary people he encountered along the way amount to a revelation of the true American experience.… (mais)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 62 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
A classic American road trip. Since author William Least Heat Moon is Osage, he’s about as classic American as you can get. In something of a funk over loss of his job and deterioration of his marital relationship, he packs a sleeping bag and some cooking equipment in his van and heads out, passing through Nameless, Tennessee; Ninety-Six, South Carolina; Dime Box, Texas; Shelby, Montana; and miscellaneous other cities, towns, and villages. Least Heat Moon mostly stays on the fringes of the country; he covers the center in a later book, Prairy Earth.

He stops and talks everywhere, and people open up to him; and he does a lot of self-contemplation, thus making this as much an autobiography as a travel book; in fact there isn’t that much description of geography (although there’s quite a bit of history). This is an easy and rewarding read; recommended. ( )
1 vote setnahkt | Dec 12, 2023 |
One of the first audio books I ever "read," back when they were on cassette. I practically fell in love with William Least Heat-moon , and I am pretty sure he was a big influence on my back-roads adventuring ways. ( )
  Kim.Sasso | Aug 27, 2023 |
This was another buddy read with my dad, since we enjoyed PrairyErth so much. William Least Heat-Moon is an excellent writer, and there are so many beautiful turns of phrase and fascinating observations here. I did not enjoy it quite as much as PrairyErth, however. Part of that is just my attachment to the prairie (oh, I lit up when we got to his descriptions of the northern prairie in this book!), but part of it lies in Heat-Moon's attitude toward women, surely colored by the fact that this entire trip was in no small part motivated by the collapse of his relationship.

This sexist feeling isn't everywhere or even a constant theme, but it shows up often enough that it really started to drag on me. There are a couple (at least) of men who, when telling their life stories, spend a lot of time blaming women for their sorry states, and Heat-Moon listens sympathetically. Then when he picks up a young woman hitchhiking, who describes the objectively abusive home life she is fleeing, he argues with her, telling her it couldn't have been all bad, and maintains a disapproving attitude. Then there are the number of times women are described based primarily on their attractiveness, including some random speculation on what one woman (who does not flirt with him in any way) would be like in bed. YES, I GET IT. YOU ARE PROCESSING YOUR FAILED/FAILING RELATIONSHIP, BUT I AM HERE FOR THE DESCRIPTIONS OF AMERICANA, CAN WE NOT MAKE THEM SO ENTANGLED WITH YOUR FEMALE BAGGAGE, PLEASE?

That said, there was so much to love in this book. Scenes that spring to mind are the conversations on racism in the Deep South, the observations on sovereign lands in Northern Arizona, the bit on hang-gliding, the hitchhiking Seventh Day Adventist, the guy who ran a maple syrup operation. All of these tiny little hyper-local ways of life that are mostly inconceivable to people living a few states away. Amazing. ( )
  greeniezona | May 29, 2023 |
His conversations with people along the way were good and the imagery was nice, it just wore on a bit too long and got to kind of navel-gazing levels of self-obsession about halfway in ( )
  martialalex92 | Dec 10, 2022 |
A travel memoir through America from 1978-1979. Fascinating read. He even stops in my town of Corvallis, OR (but is obsessed with a slug and says very little about our great town. (He arrived there about the same time I came to live here for college.) ( )
  Carolfoasia | Oct 13, 2022 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 62 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
[William Least] Heat Moon climbed into his Econoline van and drove 12,000 miles down the back roads of America — and recorded it all in this big, richly detailed book. ... Heat Moon writes from the perspective of "a contaminated man who will be trusted by neither red nor white." His Indian mind feels an especially violent antipathy to the wasteland of ecocidal capitalism, but his white mind knows how tenuous his red roots are. ... An immensely appealing performance.
adicionada por Roycrofter | editarKirkus Reviews (Dec 8, 1982)
 

» Adicionar outros autores (14 possíveis)

Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Heat Moon, William Leastautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Blaauw, Gerrit deTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Camp, Marion op denTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Tex, Gideon denTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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A frog, long-leggedy and green, belly-flopped across the road to the side where the puddles would be better. The land, still cold and wintery, was alive with creatures that trusted in the coming of spring.
Life doesn’t happen along interstates. It’s against the law.
At the Huntingburg exit, I turned off and headed for the Ohio River. Indiana 66, a road so crooked it could run for the legislature....
IT’S an old debate here: Is bluegrass indigenous to Kentucky or did it come accidentally to America as padding to protect pottery shipped from England?
The lawns went from Vertagreen bluegrass to thin fescue to hard-packed dirt glinting with fragments of glass, and the lawn ornaments changed from birdbaths to plastic flamingoes and donkeys to broken-down automobiles with raised hoods like tombstones.
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Hailed as a masterpiece of American travel writing, Blue Highways is an unforgettable journey along our nation's backroads. William Least-Heat-Moon set out with little more than the need to put home behind him and a sense of curiosity about "those little towns that get on the map--if they get on at all--only because some cartographer has a blank space to fill: Remote, Oregon; Simplicity, Virginia; New Freedom, Pennsylvania; New Hope, Tennessee; Why, Arizona; Whynot Mississippi." His adventures, his discoveries, and his recollections of the extraordinary people he encountered along the way amount to a revelation of the true American experience.

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