In less than a year, Neil Peart lost both his 19-year-old daughter, Selena, and his wife, Jackie. Faced with overwhelming sadness and isolated from the world in his home on the lake, Peart was left without direction. That lack of direction lead him on a 55,000 mile journey by motorcycle across much of North America, down through Mexico to Belize, and back again. He had needed to get away, but he had not really needed a destination. His personal odyssey is chronicled with his travel adventures, meeting up with friends and family, and the grieving, thinking, crying, and storytelling of life as he rides. Along the way, he plays music from his internal jukebox, yet nothing seems to let him find peace. And without peace, all he could do was keep riding until he found it.
©2002 Neil Peart (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I'm just a big kid.
I was vaguely aware of the existence of a band called 'Rush', but I couldn't recall hearing any of their music, my tastes in music go in a different direction.
I was unaware of this Neil Peart person. I've since learned he is considered a Living God by many people, including members of my own family.
The two things I do have in common with Mr Peart is that we were both born in 1952 and we both like to take a long motorcycle ride when we feel the need to clear our head. It was motorcycles, not music, that attracted me to this book.
This isn't a particularly happy book, but it is a fascinating one. It's a good motorcycle travelogue. It's an interesting look behind the scenes of the life a famous musician. And it's a tragic story of a man dealing with what has to be about the worst loss one can imagine.
Mr Peart doesn't always come across as particularly warm or tolerant. He does come across as brutally honest with himself and his readers.
The narration and production values are excellent, the story is compelling.
I can't say I 'enjoyed' this book, the central tragedy precludes that adjective.
I am glad I read it.
A true story about tragedy, travel and relationships.
The contrasting and easy to imagine scenery intermingling with the authors rich and enviable life.
Both , sometimes in the same minute.
I strongly recommend this book. Particularly for anyone who has an interest in motorcycling, Canada or rock music !
This dusted off the cobwebs from my memory banks. Took me back in time to Jack Kerouac and the novel "on the road" which I read and loved in college.
Though Neil does not subscribe to traditional faith or deity, this reminded of a quote from a leader of my faith;
"No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted.
It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude and humility....
All that we suffer and all that we endure, especially when we endure it patiently, builds up our characters, purifies our hearts, expands our souls, and makes us more tender and charitable, more worthy to be called the children of God . . . and it is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire and which will make us more like our Father and Mother in heaven."
One of the best books I've read this year for the raw honesty, emotions, and pure adventure of the story. By the end of the book, I wanted to run out, buy my own bike, and start an adventure that I could chronicle day by day.
Excellent book and look at the man that is Neil Peart and his life at that moment in time and what it takes to come back from such tragedy. No the same person but a new one. The narration is excellent as well. Buy it.
Well written, and well read. It helped me move along through difficult nights. I feel like I was there with Neil riding through so many landscapes and emotions. Thank you.
I already had a connection with Rush as a young drummer and always wanted to be a drummer like him. Never got close, lol, but loved this unfortunate, yet inspiring story and I find his writing to be superb. started the book, but never had time. audio books rule. Sayin.
I enjoyed hearing about places I've been and want to visit, as well as the details of Neil's motorcycle troubles and triumphs. I also enjoyed contrasting his experience of loss, as a wealthy musician with a lot of time on his hands--with those for whom the drudgery of work is a necessity and financial limitations are often severe.
Neil's descriptions of Americans as bovine obese slobs being herded into and out of buses. I have to agree with his assessment, and he did it with a modicum of humor.
If it was by someone I was interested in. I didn't find his narration particularly notable. His way of aspirating consonants caught my attention.
Many of us have lost loved ones either suddenly or after protracted illness, but what would the effect be upon someone with the freedom afforded by great wealth? What if work were unnecessary, and you could simply leave home on an impeccably maintained motorcycle, the way paved by nearly-unlimited funds and spare time--how would you then grieve? Would loss feel the same?
I usually don't think this--but this book could have benefited from concise editing. Peart's whimsical travels here and there became slightly formulaic, following a very similar shape. In fact, the book sounded more like a list than a composed story. Peart was not disingenuous about being wealthy, but he didn't spend enough time (for me at least) thinking about how that level of influence changed his grieving experience. "I wonder how this would have been different if I wasn't Neil Peart?" 99% of his readers will be left wondering.
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