One for the Road: Well, Actually…Two

Since I skipped out on posting a book suggestion yesterday, I’ll offer up two recommended reads for today. Consider it a Friday bonus, courtesy of NPR. A recent discussion about some of the year’s most overlooked books included mention of two travel-related titles that sound fascinating:

First up is Autonauts of the Cosmoroute, released in Dec. 2007 from Archipelago Books. Translated from the Spanish, it is a “… love story, a travelogue, a collection of stories and snapshots, both visual and verbal, irreverent and brilliant.” Author Julio Cortazar and his girlfriend spent an entire month living along the Paris-Marseilles freeway, a stretch of road that usually takes about ten hours to journey between the two cities. As this review notes, it is a strange book, but definitely one worth reading.

The second title mentioned is The Far Traveler, by Nancy Marie Brown, which chronicles the adventures of a Viking woman named Gudrid. This October 2007 release from Harcourt Press is a biography about an intrepid female traveler who crossed the Atlantic eight times and visited Greenland, Iceland, Rome and Newfoundland 500 years before Columbus set sail. Little is known about the courageous Gudrid, so the book delves into the history, archeology, economy and technology of the time. Brown is praised for her well-researched book and tribute to this mysterious Viking explorer.