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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic And Engrossing Read
Well done Peter Millar ! The Northern Irishman gives a thoroughly engrossing , witty , and informative account of travel across America in that much maligned - and often overlooked -form of slow transport : the Amtrak train . However , its not an rail anorak's book at all . He uses the train as a means to an end to explore the cities , out of the way places , and people...
Published on 8 Sept. 2009 by G. W. Walker

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So so
I read all the good reviews for this book and bought it. But I was very disappointed, there is just something missing - it doesn't go into enough detail about the trains he rode on and the descriptions of the places he visited and the people he met are just mundane. I struggled on, but gave up in the end.
Published 9 months ago by sos


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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic And Engrossing Read, 8 Sept. 2009
Well done Peter Millar ! The Northern Irishman gives a thoroughly engrossing , witty , and informative account of travel across America in that much maligned - and often overlooked -form of slow transport : the Amtrak train . However , its not an rail anorak's book at all . He uses the train as a means to an end to explore the cities , out of the way places , and people across this vast and diverse country - with scenery along the way . And nowhere does it more close up - warts and all - than spending a few weeks travelling by train .
Along the way he vistits NYC , Buffalo / Niagara , Chicago , Seattle , Sacramento , Reno , Salt Lake City , Denver , LA , and New Orleans , among others . His style is perhaps more Paul Theroux than Bill Bryson but I found his style thoroughly engaging with his take on inner city decay , the decline of the rail system and the people who use it , the Mormon church , American beer , the Civil War , and many other sights and people on the way . A rare mix of intelligent writing with a twinkle in the eye . Informative without being boring , opinionated without being arrogant , and amusing without being crass . Perfect !
Can't praise this book highly enough and even has me contemplating about doing a similar journey myself sometime in the future .
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Gone to look for America, 7 July 2010
By 
Thoroughly enjoyed book. Personally very familiar with most places he stopped eg Seattle, Spokane, Sacramento, New York City to name a few but not Malta MN Reno NV New Orleans LA and Memphis TN . A couple of years ago. I crossed USA by Amtrak North Carolina to Pennsylvania, Chicago, Albuquerque NM and Los Angeles so I could relate well to trains. In April this year I also experienced Amtrak again in NE USA.. I use crutches now (recent two titanium knees replacement} and they cared.

I agree with Peter Millar, their staff are excellent and friendly and to me most helpful I even use the word "kind".

The book was perfectly balanced... sadly I am allergic to beer so cannot comment on that score. I thought his style reminded me of Bill Bryson. His understanding of the American pluses and minuses were right on !

I wholly recommend the book to anyone planning to visit the real USA beyond Florida or shopping in New York City or to anyone, who wishes to get a deep insight into America at this time If tempted to visit! read the book !!

Robert Barron
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Seeking the soul of America, 4 July 2010
By 
P. Butler "Book Muncher" (Sheffield, England) - See all my reviews
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This book could have been called, 'Places not to visit in America'. However, such is the skill of the author; his discription of so many soulless dying cities is entertaining.

Peter Miller has a genious for describing people. He combines this with the research he has done on the area, and then adds his own often humorous view of the world.

He has inspired me to go to the more unusual places in the USA.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And He Finds America Too, 10 April 2009
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The author doesn't attempt any Brysonesque humour, but this is nevertheless a clear, well-written and entertaining account of his journey round the USA by rail. Although we learn plenty about Mr Millar's experiences and encounters on board - and we certainly get the message about how slow and infrequent the trains are and how inaccessible some of the stations are - we also get an insight into second-string cities such as Buffalo and Milwaukee as well as the larger, more obvious places. I particularly enjoyed his account of getting to a football stadium in South Central LA by public transport. The author gives us just enough history and background information to give a little depth to his stories, and he does so in an authoritative manner. His taste for microbreweries - and the characters he meets therein - add another level to the book. If you enjoy America, travel writing, railways, or just want a good read, get this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just want to book a Ticket now!, 11 May 2014
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I am just getting used to using a Kindle and this for me is just a great book for that medium.
I love train journeys and have a plan at some time to do journeys in the USA by train.
This really gives an appetite to book a ticket. Practical considerations of travelling, historical facts that can only enhance the experience. Easy to backtrack! for information on specific lines.
Not finished it yet but enjoying every minute.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So so, 4 July 2014
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I read all the good reviews for this book and bought it. But I was very disappointed, there is just something missing - it doesn't go into enough detail about the trains he rode on and the descriptions of the places he visited and the people he met are just mundane. I struggled on, but gave up in the end.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's What you Read Travel Books for, 17 April 2009
By 
Brian Mcmaster (South Padre Island, Texas) - See all my reviews
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Peter Millar's newest book, All Gone to Look for America, is a primer for anyone who has ever thought of taking Amtrak around the US, or for anyone who would prefer to read about it, without all the legwork. To paraphrase Anthony Burgess's review of Paul Theroux's, The Kingdom by the Sea, `Thanks to Peter Millar for following the Amtrak across America, so I don't have to.' And of course even if we did, we might not uncover the local personalities and peculiar neighborhood lore that Millar unearths as he goes. This is a well researched book with many of its associations coming straight out of the author's own experience as a multi-lingual correspondent for Reuters and his penchant for arcane knowledge of brewing and language and customs. If the book had footnotes it would need often two or three to a sentence, so wide-ranging is the author's command of historical detail.
It is what you read travel books for: Either to visit places you have never been, or to see your own town from the perspective of someone who is `not from these parts'. I not only learned, for example, the correct recipe for Elvis's Peanut Butter and Banana Toast, but I learned that the street I once lived on in Seattle was the original `Skid Row'. Seems more charming, now that I know that.
Mostly, however, Millar's vision of America's city centers is that they don't exist. Many of us have had that disquieting realization before, that we live in a civilization built around automobiles, where there is no concept of foot traffic. In my neighborhood, for instance, there are not even any continuous sidewalks. Oops! It seems an oversight of historic significance, and part of Millar's description is an account of how this came to be a fixture of urban design in the US. Whether or not this situation is easily correctible is one thing, but for those in the urban planning business, or those in the U.S. Department of Transportation who are (or should be) looking for an alternative to the automobile, Peter Millar's book, All Gone to Look for America should be required reading.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertainly on the right track, 27 July 2014
Thought this was a thoroughly enjoyable travelogue. Yes ok as others have pointed out there's scant info on practicalities of what travelling on Amtrak is like (other than infrequent) but surely you buy a travel GUIDE for. Think there's a good mix of commentary on historical & modern America as well as exploration of the places visited and brews quaffed which all in all makes for a good read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, 5 May 2014
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Unexpectedly I enjoyed this book. It was descriptive and gave another way of looking at things and religions, places and the way forward
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking read, 10 May 2014
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Mr. E. Sanderson (Leeds; England) - See all my reviews
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A well written, humorous & informative meander across America with interesting tid-bits about many iconic names & places.
His descriptions of the vistas from the train observation cars makes you feel like you're almost there & the interactions with US citizens highlights some interesting differences between us.
You can dip in and out of this book without losing the thread, a perfect read in my opinion to accompany a journey or holiday.
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All Gone to Look for America
All Gone to Look for America by Peter Millar (Paperback - 25 Aug. 2011)
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