Can you recommend some good books?

I’m going on a road trip in about two weeks and I need some good books to keep me company. I’m looking for books with good plots. I’d rather not read anything interpretive because it is my vacation time and I’d rather just enjoy a nice story.

So, any recommendations?

Can you be a little more specific as to what kinds of books you enjoy?

The Milagro Beanfield War, by John Nichols
Fast Food Nation, by Eric Schlosser (may be too depressing for vacation, but should be read)
Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Ehrenreich
Shrub, by Molly Ivins
The Tokien Trilogy, if you’ve never read it

Or possibly even Tolkien, if you can’t find Tokien. Dang…

Anything by Douglas Adams
Fight Club by Chuck Palanhiuk
if you’re into sci-fi, Ben Bova’s a good author.

Sophie’s World - - Jostein Gaarder

I dunno about you, but when I’m traveling I kinda like to read books about traveling, or at least have an aspect of travelling or related adventuring to them.

My top picks for your road trip library, complete with summaries!

  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas * - Hunter Thompson (start reading it before you leave, the first chapter will give you a good idea of what to pack for your trip :smiley: )

  • A Walk in the Woods * - Bill Bryson: A (true) humorous and insightful tale about a middle aged man’s attempt to hike the Appalaichan Trail (AT). This book literally had me laughing out loud at times when I read it. Very well done.

  • The Gentleman in the Palour * - W. Somerset Maugham: The travel journal the famous author kept on a trip through Burma in the 30’s. Very good read and the first bit of non-fiction I’ve read by my favorite author (see below)

  • On the Road * - Jack Kerouac: Classic beat generation/hipster travel story. May be a bit to heavy for your requirements but damn if any book gets me into the mood for a all out road trip, this is it.

  • Last Chance to See * - Douglas Adams: A few years before his death Adams went on a global tour with a BBC photographer to search for some of worlds most endangered species. This book is funny, sad and insightful all at the same time, with some awesome photographs as well. One of best works IMO.

  • Creation * - Gore Vidal: Historical fiction, but well researched. This book follows the adventures of a Persian Courtier during the reign of Darius and then Xerxes as he travels through the ancient world as an ambassador for the Great King.

  • Treasure Island * R.L. Stevenson: Arr matey! Avast ye landlubber! I’ve read this book probably more than a dozen times and it’s still one of my favorite novels.

  • Robinson Crusoe * - Daniel Defoe: Pirates, storms, shipwrecks, cannibals,
    goats (none of them felched) and some bang up tree forts :slight_smile: Well we all know the general story of Robinson Crusoe but who’s actually read it? It’s a complex tale about a complex man forced to come to terms with his own humanity in a way most of us can’t even imagine.

  • Time Enough for Love * - Robert A. Heinlein: The story of Lazurus Long, the oldest human ever to live. Wagon trains, incest, gun fights, sentient computers, smart people orgies and so much more. LL led a very, very interesting life. Some of Heinleins best quotes come from this book too. Some of Heinlein’s best work, IMO, and written before his books were about nothing but the famed smart people orgies :slight_smile:

Any collection of short stories by Hemmingway would make a good travel companion.

Some other good books to consider for your vacation, or when you get back, that I won’t bother to summarize.

W. S. Maugham: * The Narrow Corner, The Moon and Sixpence, Of Human Bondage* and * Cakes and Ale**

Any of the * Horatio Hornblower * novels, * The African Queen * and * The General * all by C.S. Forrester.

Also by R.A.H. * Stranger in a Strangeland *

Anything by Douglas Adams, Terry Pratchett or Kurt Vonnegut.

That list should keep you busy for a while. If I can think of anything else good for a trip I’ll post again. Enjoy!

  • I stole my sig from this one

Books by James Lee Burke. But I don’t know if they are considered “nice” stories.

The Killing Floor by Lee Child…the first in a series, it’s by far the best of the but the others are good too.

Daniel Silva’s books, I think there are about 4 or 5 of them.

The Journeyer

All by Gary Jennings.

All good summer reading.:slight_smile:

Finding Fish by Antwone Quenton Fisher

David Eggers - A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, You Shall Know Our Velocity

Anything at all by:
Nick Hornby
James Lee Burke -
Michael Connelly -

Clive Barker’s new (sort of) children’s book Abarat is fantastic! Fantasy, coming-of-age, horror and just good reading!

Any Patricia Cornwell - forensics, murder, personal issues–great and fairly good w/ the science of things on a level

Winesburg Ohio by Sherwood Anderson - predecessor/mentor to Hemingway - pictures of a town at the turn of the century and the way of life–kind of thinky and melancholy but a wonderful collection of stories

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin - young adult book about a game being played by people who all have some connection to the recently deceased Samuel Westing. Fantastic story–easy read–just plain wonderful!

The Xanth series by Piers Anthony - you said you just wanted a good read, no deep and soul-searching books and well, Xanth is all surface! Fun, heavy on puns and absurdity, Xanth is a great place to slip away…plus there are 25 books in the trilogy…but frankly if youb ought all 25, you’d have read them all in a month or less.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by R.L. Stevenson Quick read, great book, enough said.

Well, that’s enough blathering from me and thus I submit my suggestions.

the descent by jeff long
house of leaves by mark danielowski
in the heart of the sea by i cant remember but its about the tale that inspired moby dick

what i can remember right now off the top of my dome

i second “a walk in the woods.”

anything by the following:

preston and childs
james rollins
matthew reilly

Thanks, everyone for the suggestions… I’ll look into them.

I guess I should have been a little bit clearer… but seriously, I read anything. I give everything a chance. If I don’t like it, I’ll put it down. If I do, I keep reading.

But I would just like to point out that time travel facinates me.

Books I would recommend to anyone who likes books (good anytime of year, but I had summer reading in mind):

The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks
The Crowroad also by Iain Banks
The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon
Not Wanted on the Voyage by Timothy Findlay
A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller
Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
The Cowards by Josef Skvorecky
Almost Transparent Blue by Ryu Murakami
Trainspotting and Porno by Irvine Welsh (the latter is the sequel

Should be something in there for most tastes…

Geek Love

I’d suggest Chopper 1-4 by Mark “Chopper” Read, the infamous Aussie headhunter.

There’s about ten books, but I’m pretty sure all the rest are fictional, except the tenth (10 1/2 perhaps?) which was written by an ex-police detective.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman is good for traveling, he even says that some of the spots his characters go are real and some aren’t. You have to find out for yourself.

Carl Haissen is a good more mainstream author. Lucky You is probably his best work.

If you want time travel, look into some of Joe Haldemans stuff - “The Forever War” springs to mind.
As far as travel in general goes, I highly recommend “Carpet Wars” by Christophe Kremmer. Apart from being a damn good read, It gives a fascinating commentary on the politics, society, and culture of a number of Central Asian Islamic countries.
If you’re interested in science, Bill Bryson’s new one, “A Short History of Almost Everything” is a great spot to start. It is light reading, but for the most part the science is reasonably accurate.(I picked up four or five factual errors and a couple of questionable inclusions, but for a book this broad, that is fairly good.) Abounds with interesting, wacky anecdotes. Covers a lot of territory, and hence doesn’t go into depth in any one subject matter.