Road Trip!

Road Trip Beach
A few weeks ago I did a list on cars + books. It was easy (and I’m all about easy, I’d try to tell you otherwise, but in the interest of keeping it real…). So, thinking along those same lines, I decided to do road trips. Who doesn’t love a good road trip?! I actually went on a few this summer. I visited Colorado (home state), Utah, Nevada, California, Wyoming, South Dakota, and New Mexico. The summer contained one car accident, zero traffic citations, and nearly 50 million dead bugs. Success, of a sort.

So I sat down to write this list – truly planning on whipping it out in 30 minutes or less – and nothing. I mean, honestly, there is On the Road, Fear and Loathing,  and… That was it. That was all I could come up with. I wracked my brain a little more and managed to get The Road to fit my needs, and then The Stand, but even that felt like cheating.

Naturally, I fretted, worried, and otherwise over-thought this list until I took the fun out of it. We all have talents, and that is mine.

Today’s lesson: Good intentions pave the way to road trip hell.


There’s a reason every single road trip list features On the Road and Fear and Loathing and John Green. Either lesson is yours to learn, both are true.

In no particular order:

10. On the Road // Jack Kerouac. Classic. And all of that disillusionment.
09. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas // Hunter S. Thompson. Nothing will top it. Ever.
08. The Road // Cormac McCarthy. So…it’s not quite the trip on a road I’d want to take.
07. The Stand // Stephen King. Stay out of the tunnels, man.
06. Paper Towns // John Green.  It’s just very…John Green. Still good.
05. Mosquitoland // David Arnold. Rounding out my YA selections…
04. Where the Heart Is // Billie Letts. There may be nothing worse that road tripping out to California and being abandoned at a Wal-Mart in Oklahoma. While pregnant.
03. The Grapes of Wrath // John Steinbeck. Never mind, this is the worst road trip ever.
02. In the Tall Grass // Stephen King and Joe Hill. Enjoy the last sip of your margarita.
01. Setting Free the Bears // John Irving. Get on the road and see where it takes you (it’s Vienna, always Vienna).

What list did you come up with this week? Find others here.

Photo found here.

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  • Chrissi Reads

    I keep seeing Mosquitoland around. I’m intrigued!

    • Rory O’Connor

      The book was a lot of fun and it made me laugh, so I’d definitely recommend it.

  • Jess Henry

    Number Four made me laugh a little. But it’s very true. Excellent list. I chose Historical Fiction Books/Authors this week.

    • Rory O’Connor

      That’s always a great topic.

  • Kate

    No other road trip stories spring to mind… Who knew it would be such a tough category?

    • Rory O’Connor

      Right?! Good intentions and all…

  • Sam Whitehouse

    I’ve read a lot of King, but not the Stand yet.

    • Rory O’Connor

      It’s an absolute must!

  • debnance

    Love road trips in books. My personal favorite is Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

    • Rory O’Connor

      I’ve never read that one, but I’ve heard so much about it!

  • Leslie Hauser

    Hi! A million dead bugs 🙂 Such an integral part of a road trip! Grapes of Wrath…I never thought

    Lof that as a road trip book, but what a road trip that was! Great book. Cool topic this week.

    My TTT

    • Rory O’Connor


  • Lianne @

    Hmm, trying to think if I’ve read a road trip book…nothing’s coming to my mind at the moment. Great list! 🙂

    My TTT

    • Rory O’Connor

      I know! I thought it would be such n easy topic too….

  • mariahelena

    I’ve been attempting to read Paper Towns for weeks now and I’m still not super excited about it.

    • Rory O’Connor

      It’s not a book I loved. If you’ve tried this hard, I say abandon it.

  • Laura @ 125Pages

    I forgot about Where the Heart Is. I remember anxiously awaiting my copy from the library. I really liked that one. Thanks for the throwback! My TTT

    • Rory O’Connor

      I did too, I hadn’t thought about it in a while and thought ‘why not include it?” I loved the movie too, surprisingly.

  • MeezCarrie

    LOL great list (and great lessons) ! My TTT

    • Rory O’Connor


  • Sarah (Sarah’s Book Shelves)

    Haha! I bought The Grapes of Wrath years ago and never read it…had no idea there was a road trip in it! Did read Mosquitoland…pretty good!

    • Rory O’Connor

      It’s worth picking up for it’s classic value, though it’s (rightfully) depressing.

  • Lindsay @ Lindsay’s Library

    Fun list! What an awesome summer you had… and I thought I was busy the past few months! (I can definitely relate about the 50 million dead bugs, though!)

    • Rory O’Connor

      Thanks! You get out on the open, desolated road and it’s just you and the insects.

  • The Book Wheel

    Check you out, getting all creative! Although, honestly, if any road trip book is like Fear and Loating, I’m going to skip it.

    • Rory

      It’s not that bad! 🙂

  • Christine @ BookishlyB

    My husband and I were just talking about The Road today, although more in a “if there’s an apocalypse and I don’t die just kill me because it all looks so dirty” sort of way (and that was more me…). I really wish I would have taken a lengthy road trip pre-baby. I’m sure in a few years the notion will seem a lot less horrific, but until then I’m staying away from long car rides.

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