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Travels In A Strange State: Cycling Across the USA [Paperback]

Josie Dew
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Paperback, 1 Jun 1995 --  
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Travels In A Strange State: Cycling Across the USA Travels In A Strange State: Cycling Across the USA 3.4 out of 5 stars (7)
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Book Description

1 Jun 1995

By most people's standards, Josie Dew is hugely adventurous. By American standards, she is completely insane. For Americans drive everywhere: through cinemas, restaurants, banks, even trees. But driving past Josie as she pedalled across America was a new and alarming experience.

On her eight-month journey Josie experienced it all; race riots in Los Angeles, impossible heat in Death Valley, Sexual Tantric Seminars in Hawaii. From Utah to the Great Lakes, via improbable places like Zzyzx and Squaw Tit, her two-wheeled odyssey brought her into contact with all the wonders and worries of this larger-than-life country.

Highly entertaining, richly informative, TRAVELS IN A STRANGE STATE is a personal memoir of an improbable journey, revealing the United States as it is rarely seen - from the seat of a bicycle.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere; New edition edition (1 Jun 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0751505757
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751505757
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 9.9 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,882,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


an action packed and entertaining tale... (19 Magazine)

it is her well-developed sense of the ridiculous which makes her adventures so entertaining. (TODAY)

You might not let your daughter do it. But then again, if she could produce such an entertaining book as this, you just might. (GUARDIAN)

Book Description

* A highly entertaining memoir of an improbable journey, revealing the United States as it is rarely seen - from the seat of a bicycle

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First Sentence
Two days before I was to leave for America, my father handed me an article which he had thoughtfully cut out of the London Evening Standard: Murder Toll in U.S. Hits 24,000 Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Repetitive and a bit dull. 16 April 2006
By andys
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Desipte being billed as "cycling across the usa" over half the book covers Hawaii. Of the rest, it seems as though it is mostly complaints about the landscape being desert or cornfields.

Added to this are the repetitive accounts of guns, murders, rapes and shootings making this a rather dull book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Travels in Hawaii and Other States 2 May 2012
By takingadayoff TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Josie Dew's books about her travels around the world on her bicycle remind me a little of Dervla Murphy's narratives, but Dew wears her politics a bit more lightly than Murphy. Traveling slowly and in the open allows the cyclist to observe social conditions at close range, while the long stretches of road leave plenty of time to ponder what it all means.

In Travels in a Strange State, Dew flies into Oakland and sets out to cycle down the coast into Mexico. After a few days in the Bay Area, she considers traveling up the coast into Alaska instead. Eventually she heads south, stops in Los Angeles for a few weeks, then impulsively decides to fly to Hawaii. This turns out to be the best decision of the trip, because she falls in love with Hawaii.

In fact, by the time we're halfway through the book, she's still in Hawaii, the smallest state in the union. She still has the rest of the country to get to if she's going to write about traveling across the States.

She finally makes her way back to Los Angeles and from there it's on to Las Vegas. If you've ever driven from L.A. to Las Vegas, you know what a desolate stretch it is. I can't imagine bicycling it, but Josie does it, in 100 degree temperatures and air so dry she has to stop regularly to tend to nosebleeds.

From Las Vegas, she charges on through Utah, Colorado, Kansas, and Missouri. Although this takes weeks of actual time, it goes pretty fast in the book. One stretch of mid-western highway is much like another, as anyone who's driven cross country knows. It isn't until Dew stops in Illinois to meet up with her mother who has flown in from England, that the narrative picks up the pace again.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Hawiian Red Herring 14 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I enjoy Josie Dew books and this one was no exception until we reached the Hawiian Islands. A third of the book was spent visiting each island. I would have oreferred more time written on the American mainland.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully ambiguous title 28 Jan 2011
By Donald
I'm always in awe of people who write books, and some of them are worth reading. This is one of them, as are all of Josie's books. I find it a bit scary in places, but nonetheless Josie leads us through the dark and back into the light. And there is plenty of light!
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