Friday, October 28, 2016

Books By Theme: Quit Your Job! Travel Instead!

travel nonfiction book list

The Lost Girls book cover by Jennifer Baggett
The Lost Girls
by Jennifer Baggett, Holly Corbett, and Amanda Pressner
Harper Perennial (2011)

If you're a 20-something working and living in New York City, you're living the dream -- right? Not if you're Jennifer Baggett, Holly Corbett, or Amanda Pressner. The trio of friends -- wondering if the paths they were on were the right ones -- left their apartments, jobs, and boyfriends to embark on a year-long adventure around the world, visiting more than ten countries on four continents, including Peru, Vietnam, India, and Australia. Though there are difficulties (could you hang out with your two besties for a year without getting on each other's nerves?), there are also a lot of amazing experiences, such as traveling down the Amazon and volunteering at a girls' orphanage in Kenya.

nonfiction memoir Susan Spencer-Wendel book coverUntil I Say Goodbye
by Susan Spencer-Wendel with Bret Witter
Harper (2014)

This isn't your typical travelogue. Until I Say Good-Bye unsentimentally chronicles the final year of a 45-year-old journalist and mother with ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, an irreversible condition that progressively destroys nerves that control muscles. Once she was diagnosed, it wasn't long before Spencer-Wendel decided to quit her job (though she loved it) and use some of her remaining days traveling to such places as the Yukon, Hungary, the Bahamas, and Cyprus with friends and family, including individual trips with each of her three children. Readers joining her on her poignant, powerful journey will be inspired to find joy in their own situations.

Educating Alice by Alice Steinbach book cover nonfiction memoir
Educating Alice
by Alice Steinbach
Random House (2005)

In Without Reservations, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Alice Steinbach chronicled taking a leave of absence from the Baltimore Sun to travel and learn about herself. Several years later, she completely quit her job and set off again. In Educating Alice, she enrolls in a French cooking class in Paris, attends border collie training in Scotland, learns traditional Japanese arts in Kyoto, studies art and architecture in Havana, and more, while meeting a wide range of interesting people along the way. With vividly depicted settings and keen observations and insights, this memoir is a charming delight.


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