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Table Of Contents

MISSOURI
IOWA
MINNESOTA
SOUTH DAKOTA
NEBRASKA
KANSAS
OKLAHOMA
TEXAS
NEW MEXICO
COLORADO
WYOMING
MONTANA
IDAHO
P. 1
Romancing the Roads: A Driving Diva's Firsthand Guide, West of the Mississippi

Romancing the Roads: A Driving Diva's Firsthand Guide, West of the Mississippi

Ratings:

1.6

(21)
|Views: 99|Likes:
Published by RowmanLittlefield
This compendium of facts, observations, discoveries, reviews, serendipities, humor, experiences, and more is not only for the road traveler, but the armchair traveler as well. Unlike typical guides, which read more like phone directories, Romancing the Roads is a shared diary of discoveries along America's highways and byways. Join Gerry on a tour of hotels, B & B's, restaurants, national parks, antique stores, consignment shops, boutiques, and little-known places that make America such a great place for road-tripping. Unless otherwise noted, the author has visited every place mentioned, from the ostrich farm along Interstate 10 in Arizona to the Biltmore hotel in Los Angeles. Even if you never get in the car and discover such wonders for yourself, you will enjoy this vicarious journey to places both sublime and ordinary as the author makes her way from Washington to California and east to the Mississippi River.
This compendium of facts, observations, discoveries, reviews, serendipities, humor, experiences, and more is not only for the road traveler, but the armchair traveler as well. Unlike typical guides, which read more like phone directories, Romancing the Roads is a shared diary of discoveries along America's highways and byways. Join Gerry on a tour of hotels, B & B's, restaurants, national parks, antique stores, consignment shops, boutiques, and little-known places that make America such a great place for road-tripping. Unless otherwise noted, the author has visited every place mentioned, from the ostrich farm along Interstate 10 in Arizona to the Biltmore hotel in Los Angeles. Even if you never get in the car and discover such wonders for yourself, you will enjoy this vicarious journey to places both sublime and ordinary as the author makes her way from Washington to California and east to the Mississippi River.

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Publish date: Jan 1, 2011
Added to Scribd: Dec 21, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reservedISBN:9781589796409
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11/26/2014

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9781589796409

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rsambroak_1 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
The title of this book is misleading, and reading it was ultimately very disappointing, the reason I waited so long to write a review about it. (I don't like to be negative or harshly critical, especially about books because there is usually something to like in anything I read). It is not a "compendium of facts, observations, discoveries, reviews, serendipities, humor, experiences, and more..." That would have been something to enjoy. Instead it is nothing more than a general travel guide (and not a good one at that) similar to what you would pick up when you visit your local Triple A office for a map and a Triptik. The author might have salvaged something if she had simply taken a little more time to write a few more sentences (in better prose) about truly little known or odd facts.I would not even use this as a reference guide planning a trip. The Roadfood books by the Sterns are much better for that.
indianajane_1 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I was really looking forward to this book and it was a major disappointment. She had nothing at all for Indiana and very little for Illinois. I found what she did have--except for a couple of states--to be superficial and not all that interesting.
manogirl reviewed this
Rated 2/5
I was really disappointed in the content in this book. I thought it might be a fun guide for Illinois, and yet the Illinois chapter was really unhelpful and slim. Clearly, this author knows certain states better than others, and it really shows in the chapters. Instead of including states that she really has very few tips for, this should have been more selective, and only include the states she can really go to town on. And it seems like she might have some good tips, but not for the states I'm near. Which is really too bad.
katkat50 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I've been putting off doing this review, because the book was such a disappointment. The title -- "Romancing the Roads: A Driving Diva's Firsthand Guide" -- suggested to me that this would be more than the usual guide to all the best tourist traps along the road. The book claims: "Unlike typical guides, which read more like phone directories, Romancing the Road is a shared diary of discoveries along America's highways and byways." But the author's "discoveries" are places like Acadia National Park, colonial Williamsburg, and the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee. These are all popular, beautiful, interesting, and well-known places -- but that's just the point. I don't need a "firsthand guide" to the locations everyone already knows about!Gerry Hempel Davis's selection of accommodations (hotels and restaurants) are similarly unimaginative and undiverse. She lists loads of fabulously expensive and exclusive places (like The Homestead, in Hot Springs, Virginia) but very few off-the-beaten-track places that might be a bit less pricey and a lot more interesting. Also, Davis provides a long list of plantations near Richmond, Virginia. Describing these plantations, she gushes, "Virginia's plantations are outstanding. Many are open to the public. In historic Charleston City County along Route 5, a short distance from Richmond, the James River plantations are exceptional." She says nothing about the slave economy that made those plantations possible. This might not bother everyone, but it bothers me a lot. Southern plantation society is a part of our history, but so is slavery, and to present the first as a wonderful example of gracious Southern living while ignoring the second, without which that gracious Southern living would not have been possible, is unconscionable in my view. Ninety pages further on, in a section on Charleston, South Carolina, she does mention that it was in that city that "one-third of the nation's slaves arrived in the New World to be sold on the riverfront at the market" -- then quickly adds, "In spite of this dark mark in history, there was a large number of free blacks in the area. It must not be overlooked these inhabitants came with skills, one of the most impressive being iron working." It's unclear whether she's saying that only the free blacks had these skills, or whether she realizes that the beautiful "iron gates and balconies all around" Charleston were made by unpaid slave labor. She also does not mention that, however many free slaves there were in Charleston before the Civil War, they were in constant danger of being re-enslaved. There was no such thing at that time as a person with black skin who had legal rights that were certain and could not be taken away. But the author appears to be much more taken with how polite Charlestonians are, and with the city's reputation as "the best-mannered city in the nation."
2chances reviewed this
Rated 3/5
It's hard to describe this one; it's not really a road-memoir type of book, but neither is it a AAA type guide with lots of detail about any one city. Davis gives a brief description of a restaurant or two, an inn or three, in the cities she visited. Not much in the way of interesting anecdote (which I think I was expecting.) It's a pleasant reference book to supplement other travel guides if you're planning a trip east of the Mississippi. Myself, I would prefer either more reviews or more anecdote per review; this is more balanced between the two.
janehuber reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I love a good armchair travel guide, but this book is a major disappointment. It's a "firsthand guide" with a heavy emphasis on Florida and Virginia, states in which the author clearly spends a lot of time. Most of the other states get an incredibly short shrift. In the Massachusetts chapter: "It has been a long time since I've been to this state." Followed by ONE hotel description. That's it for the whole state! The Maryland (3 pages) chapter leaves out Baltimore. And so it goes throughout the book: odd choices, old-fashioned commentary, and out of date information. I can not understand how and why this book got a green light to be published.
shawnmarie_1 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I am a woman who loves to travel on daytrips to out of the way and hidden spots in my home state of Pennsylvania. I've never felt a need to travel outside the boundaries of our state because there is so much to see IN our state.You'd never know that though from Gerry Hempel Davis' review of Pennsylvania in Romancing the Roads Volume 1. She devotes six whole pages out of 396 to my favorite state and what she does list isn't accurate - phone numbers are missing digits etc.Yes, I understand this book is just a glimpse of her travel route but then she shouldn't bill the book at being about the East of the Mississippi. It should say, "Mostly about Florida, Virginia and the Carolinas" which is what she covers in detail. Especially Florida. Like we needed another book on Florida.I guess I should feel lucky though, Illinois only got four pages.
bookangel_a reviewed this
Rated 3/5
I was excited to receive this book from LibraryThing's Early Reviewer program, because I love to travel, and I love to read about other people's travels.This book is an encyclopedia of sorts. It is a state by state guide to both popular and "out of the way" spots - places you might want to check out as you drive through the state. (This volume covers the states east of the Mississippi.) Davis has some clever suggestions, and it would be worth your while to read this before a road trip to a particular state. It is also nice to read about the states you have already visited, and see if your favorite spots are featured. Much of the book was written from Davis' personal experience, so there are many short personal observations and stories included.My only disappointment was that I found it difficult to read this from cover to cover. It is a book to dip into from time to time instead, and that was not what I was expecting. It reads like a USA travel encyclopedia that is written by a good friend.
acornell_13 reviewed this
Rated 1/5
Romancing the Roads is a slickly packaged book, but it is not a travel memoir, rather a travel guide, and as far a guides go it is really lacking. She apologizes right up for missing 4 states east of the Mississippi: Vermont, New Hampshire, Indiana and Mississippi. I live in Indiana and have lived in Vermont so those omissions bothered me right away.I began reading this from the start at Maine: she is trying to drive me through the eastern US in some sort of logical map reading order. She writes a few short pages on Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island and of course skips the two most beautiful and drivable states, Vermont and New Hampshire. New England was reduced to LL Bean and Manhattan. Though, I may love to visit Manhattan, I will never drive there. She does nice job on Virginia which she loves and because of family ties has some connection there. When I go to Virginia, I will read this book for advice.The books should have been broken into regions--really the whole eastern US in just under 400 pages! There is some useful information in the book but you really have to dig to find it. I am not sure what a publisher thought would be interesting or useful about this book.
nelliemc reviewed this
Rated 1/5
I asked for this book thinking it would be a fun story of traveling about America and finding great stories, ala Bill Bryson, Charles Osgood, Stephen Frye. instead, it's short, superficial notes of just a few places to eat, stay, and visit. This is Volume 1, covering the East of the Miss., but without NH, Vt, Miss. Or Indiana. She covers Maine in 7 pages most of which are driving discussions, food prices, and an homage to a business now closed. Poor Mass. Gets only 3 pages discussing the Ritz and Liberty Hotels. Connecticut rates 5 pages, most of which describes the Monhegan Sun casino. This book, in short is awful, and provides no enjoyment for the tourist, traveler, or armchair reader.

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