The Whole of the USA in one Travel Book:Grand Prize #3

The Great American Road Trip

The USA in a Book

Destination: The American Road

Book: The USA Book: A Journey Through America (2009) from Lonely Planet.

This book weighs a ton.  Well not QUITE a ton, but you know what I mean. It is a nice big coffee table book printed on fine, heavy paper to show off the hundreds of photographs.

But after all, it is portraying a great big country. The USA Book: A Journey Through America, published in 2009 by Lonely Planet briefly talks about some categories of interest, and sketches out the country by regions and then it gets down to business. Each state gets four big colorful pages.

For instance, take Ohio. The capsule description reads, “Pay Ohio some respect.  It’s the nation’s seventh-most populous state–stocked with roller coasters, rock and roll, Appalachian parks and party islands–and Ohio decides the nation’s fate with its political votes.” Take that, you snoothy northeasterners.

Pictures include the historic Union Terminal in Cincinnati. It is spectacular, by the way. I’ve wandered around gazing at the wonderful art-deco design and paintings. Other pictures show the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, an unidentified roller coaster. When my husband and I honeymooned in a cabin in one of Ohio’s state parks, we ventured out to go down to Cincinnati to write on their roller coaster. And of course there is a corn field.

Did you know that Ohio is home to eight Presidents? And here’s a myth from the book–Ohio births Presidents, but also kills them. “Tecumseh’s Curse” Tecumseh cursed William Henry Harrison who defeated the Indians at the Battle of Tippecanoe (surely you remember Tippecanoe and Tyler, too–the most memorable Presidential slogan until “It’s the economy, stupid”). The curse said Harrison would be elected but not serve. And if you remember your history, he caught pneumonia at his inaugural and died shortly afterward.  But Tecumseh’s curse went on to apply to every Great White Father elected in a year ending in “0”. And the curse claimed many victims, including Lincoln and Kennedy until Reagan broke the curse.

I think you can see from this tidbit that The USA book, besides being beautiful, will inform you and entertain you as you plan your Great American Road Trip. (But, where, Ken is asking, is the Buckeye tree and THE Ohio State University?)

This post is a triple whammy–my daily post about a book that inspires travel, the Wednesday Great American Road Trip post AND


About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons . She writes frequently for Reel Life With Jane and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

16 thoughts on “The Whole of the USA in one Travel Book:Grand Prize #3

  1. What a wonderful resource! I’d love to spend some time seeing the country through their photos and commentary.

  2. One my fantasies is take a few months off for the “BIG” road trip. This book would be like travel porn!! Yes, please.

  3. USA! USA! The USA Book all the way. At least you’ll be helping the struggling United States Postal System. Thank goodness for Media Mail.

  4. Lonely Planet’s The USA Book: A Journey Through America (2009) certainly looks like a heavy book. I will have to check it out. You mention Ohio in the review, but living in Boise, I would love to see what they say about Idaho. I look forward to cracking this one open.

  5. It would be nifty to have The USA Book along on my next journey through America, scheduled for this April.

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