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Travels with Charley in Search of America Audiobook

Travels with Charley in Search of America

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Publisher's Summary

A stunning evocation of America on the eve of a tumultuous decade—and a moving elegy for more innocent times.

In September 1960, John Steinbeck and his poodle, Charley, embarked on a journey across America, from small towns to growing cities to glorious wilderness oases. Travels with Charley is animated by Steinbeck’s attention to the specific details of the natural world and his sense of how the lives of people are intimately connected to the rhythms of nature—to weather, geography, the cycles of the seasons. His keen ear for the transactions among people is evident, too, as he records the interests and obsessions that preoccupy the Americans he encounters along the way.

©1962 John Steinbeck (P)2011 Penguin

What the Critics Say

“Pure delight, a pungent potpourri of places and people interspersed with bittersweet essays on everything from the emotional difficulties of growing old to the reasons why giant sequoias arouse such awe.” (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (826 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Overall
4.4 (729 )
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Story
4.6 (727 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 06-21-11
    Suzn F Fletcher, VT, US 06-21-11 Member Since 2013

    I believe a reviewer should finish a book before submitting a review. What do you think?

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "On the Road Adventure"

    A middle aged man and his dog go on an adventure. They leave their comfortable life to meet people and see parts of America unknown. This memoir is sweet and touching, Mr. Steinbeck clearly loves people and his special dog Charley. I had to give an extra star to this book for the authors spot-on (no pun intended ) description of Charley, his standard poodle. I dare say they are all alike, and yet we who own and care for Standards think each of ours is so very unique.
    A nice read, a kind man and his pup meet people and reflect. I liked this book quite a lot.

    19 of 20 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ken 04-11-15
    ken 04-11-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Disappointed"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I expected an story and view of Americana,,, geography and culture, but found the author's politics and prejudices interfering in what could have been a great account of his travels.


    Could you see Travels with Charley in Search of America being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    As Steinbeck said that The Badlands were no more representative of America than was Disneyworld, I would say that The Coopers, or the Cheerleaders, or his Texas hosts were no more representative of the families I have known as a life long resident of Texas and Louisiana.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Y. Cohron 10-19-14 Member Since 2006
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    "What a shame you missed the REAL South!"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    No. Very narrow minded and biased concerning the South! There are other time periods and peoples who have been sadly illtreated in the history of this country. Someone was grouchy and homesick by the time he reached the south!


    What was most disappointing about John Steinbeck’s story?

    His narrow minded telling of his single experience with the South. There are many good things about the South that he failed to see. Perhaps he was wearing blinders when he reached the South in addition to cutting this part of his experience short. He missed much in his opinated abuse of our Southern states. Many of us have loving, positive experiences and memories with our black friends just as he did growing up in CA.


    Was Travels with Charley in Search of America worth the listening time?

    Until he reached the South and treated it so poorly, it was interesting.


    Any additional comments?

    Excellent performance - very poor ending! What a jerk! And what a pity party we were having by the time we reached the beautiful Southern states of this great country.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rejena 06-16-13
    Rejena 06-16-13

    Books make work bearable until work becomes writing and reading books.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Needed a Vacation took one with Charlie"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Absolutely. Want to give this audible as my Summer Read to all my friends. Gotta figure out how to do that.


    What about Gary Sinise’s performance did you like?

    really great.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    An old favorite that needed revisited since I was in need of a vacation and can't get out of work.


    Any additional comments?

    Travels with Charlie is a dreamstate that brings me home and takes me away all at the same time.
    Thanks Mr. Steinbeck!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald 05-22-16
    Donald 05-22-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Okay, THAT'S it! I've had it!"
    What disappointed you about Travels with Charley in Search of America?

    John Steinbeck is a pretentious jerk, a poor journalist and missed America on the trip.

    And when he starts waxing poetic - just shoot me.....please.

    Gary Sinise does a terrific job as narrator.


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen 07-29-14
    Stephen 07-29-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Dreadful"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The actual story itself could have made this a 4 or 5. I don't know why an actor of great prestige would have wanted to read such a book.


    Would you ever listen to anything by John Steinbeck again?

    Yes... Steinbeck does have great fiction... this nonfiction was the worst


    Would you be willing to try another one of Gary Sinise’s performances?

    Yes


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Travels with Charley in Search of America?

    All of it...


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 01-24-15
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    "Good at the beginning,"
    What disappointed you about Travels with Charley in Search of America?

    It was too much talk about his feelings. I just wanted to hear about what he saw.


    Has Travels with Charley in Search of America turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, I like Bill Bryson very Much. He is funny as well.


    What three words best describe Gary Sinise’s performance?

    okay


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    karen Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 08-25-13
    karen Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 08-25-13

    Eclectic tastes. Love anything thought provoking. Especially if its blended with some from of humour.

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    "Steinbeck travels"
    If you could sum up Travels with Charley in Search of America in three words, what would they be?

    Epic in a small kind way


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Steinbeck. Bears his soul in loving America and particularly the common person


    What does Gary Sinise bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He is just a superb reader. Really brings out all the characters!


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Yes. When Mr Steinbeck was talking about killing the coyotes.


    Any additional comments?

    His comments on the loss of regional languages resulting from TV was right on and quite sad actually!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Providence, RI, United States 02-27-12
    Charles Providence, RI, United States 02-27-12 Member Since 2015
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    "Love Steinbeck and particularily this book."

    I had read it years ago and now listened to it. I will listed again in the future. There is so much in the book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebb CA, United States 12-15-11
    Rebb CA, United States 12-15-11 Member Since 2016
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    "Enjoyed the Journey"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Travels with Charley in Search of America to be better than the print version?

    For me, yes. I started the print version a year ago and got about half way through. When I saw there was an audio, I bought it and listened to it each day on my short commute. I took my time with it and felt like I was along for the ride.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Travels with Charley in Search of America?

    There were many memorable moments. Difficult to select only one. When he met the man who lived in a mobile home and how it gave me a different perspective on folks that choose mobile homes over permanent homes.


    What about Gary Sinise’s performance did you like?

    I appreciated how Gary Sinise brought the story and characters to life. It felt very real to me.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    What I did feel with this book is a sense of reflection. I am a writer, an observer, a traveler of the mind, so it prompted me to reflect on my own experiences and the people I run into in my local travels. It was a very human book, relevant now, just as much as when it was written.


    Any additional comments?

    Charley added something special to the story. I felt myself smiling a lot, letting out a few laughs, and reflecting a bit.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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