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The Wonder Trail Audiobook

The Wonder Trail: True Stories from Los Angeles to the End of the World

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Publisher's Summary

Steve Hely, writer for The Office and American Dad!, and recipient of the Thurber Prize for American Humor, presents a travel book about his journey through Central and South America. Part travel book, part pop history, part comic memoir, Hely's writing will make listeners want to reach for their backpacks and hiking boots.

The Wonder Trail is the story of Steve's trip from Los Angeles to the bottom of South America, presented in 102 short chapters. The trip was ambitious - Steve traveled through Mexico City, ancient Mayan ruins, and the jungles, coffee plantations, and remote beaches of Central America; across the Panama Canal; by sea to Colombia; to the wild Easter celebration of Popayán; to the Amazon rainforest, the Inca sites of Cuzco and Machu Picchu; to the Galápagos Islands and the Atacama Desert of Chile; and down to the jagged and wind-worn land of Patagonia at the very end of the Western Hemisphere.

Steve's plan was to discover the weird, wonderful, and absurd in Central and South America, to seek and find the incredible, delightful people and experiences that came his way. And the book that resulted is just as fun. A blend of travel writing, history, and comic memoir, The Wonder Trail will inspire, inform, and delight.

©2016 Steve Hely (P)2016 Penguin Audio

What the Critics Say

"With an authentic and self-effacing voice, author and narrator Steve Hely brings his sharp sense of humor to the task of describing his trip from Los Angeles to Punta Arenas.... He also does clever impressions of his guides and fellow travelers. He has read widely and does a good job pronouncing Spanish names and interpreting sites. Overall, his insights are entertaining, his audiobook whimsical and fun." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (68 )
5 star
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3 star
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4.2 (63 )
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Story
4.5 (63 )
5 star
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4 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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  •  
    Alexander G. Hagan 09-27-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Very well told Adventure"

    This is a book that may be even better told by the author than read by myself because of his humor. I enjoyed it beginning to end, although the history of places became a bit in depth and confusing at times. This was a very funny, entertaining and informative book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ben 07-30-16
    Ben 07-30-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Enjoyable Story"

    His voice sounds like the guy that does the ads for Trader Joe's that you always hear on Pandora.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nichole Elk Grove, CA, United States 11-30-16
    Nichole Elk Grove, CA, United States 11-30-16

    I love self improvement books, bios, memiors, educational! I love to learn about other cultures, science, and history. I am dating someone with kids, so I am also seeking helpful books on how to raise kids.

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    "Hard to finish"

    I liked the author's laid back style. He seemed to know a lot about where he was going, but not sure how much of it was true. I wanted to like this book, but was hard to finish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark 10-29-16
    Mark 10-29-16 Member Since 2014

    Enjoy books about History, Sports, Travel, Geography

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    "Excellent Writer"
    If you could sum up The Wonder Trail in three words, what would they be?

    Well-written, interesting, informative


    What about Steve Hely’s performance did you like?

    Good pace kept story moving did not go too fast.


    Any additional comments?

    Want to read more of his books. Only downside of this book is he takes a long time to get to the actual trip spends a great deal of time talking about LA Boston and other things before actually getting to the trip.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Juan 10-25-16
    Juan 10-25-16 Member Since 2016
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    "naaaa"

    This book is the tipicall stupid gringo perspective of diferent countries and cultures didnt like it at all...the only good part is the ayahuasca relevation....sorry dude

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessica 10-13-16
    Jessica 10-13-16 Member Since 2015

    SciFi starter, Travel Adventure main course, RomCom pallet cleanser. I love to eat, read, travel, and sleep in hammocks.

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    "A well researched and funny story"

    I was surprised how much history and back story was included in the book. Steve Hely comes of as incredibly invested in the world around him and they possible ways it has shaped the people and places he is visiting. This is not a backpackers story, he jumps from place to place in planes, but he takes the time to set up why he is going to each place. Steven explains what drew him there, which author or historic event sparked his interest, or how he met the person he is visiting. I enjoyed this because while educational it was also very entertaining.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sofia 07-10-16
    Sofia 07-10-16
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    "I LOVED this book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Wonder Trail to be better than the print version?

    I love when the author reads the audio version of their own books because they know where to put the emphasis, know where to pause, and know where the punch line is supposed to go. So for that reason, I would say yes, the audio version is better than the print. Steve Hely did a fantastic job with this book and I thoroughly enjoyed it until the end.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Wonder Trail?

    I am American born, raised in Central America, so going through this journey with him, I could relate soo much to what he was seeing, experiencing, and it was so realistic and exact that I could imagine myself actually on this journey.


    What about Steve Hely’s performance did you like?

    He's a funny writer! And a great story teller too. As soon as I finished listening to The Wonder Trail, I came straight to audible.com to see what else he had done because he simply left me wanting more.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book, and listening to Steve's rendition of his own adventures made it so incredibly enjoyable. Would recommend to anyone!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dawn R. Shelton Oklahoma City 07-02-16
    Dawn R. Shelton Oklahoma City 07-02-16 Member Since 2016

    listener

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    "Wondrous Wonder Trail"

    Maybe overboard on the five stars for overall, performance AND story. No, it's not. A book read by the author is a gift. And Hely has a great delivery. THat he had to likely rehearse how to get through some of his long sentences in one breath is just poetic justice. This book would be super on a road trip - but actually I listened while organizing my son's sock and tshirt drawers, canning tomatoes and doing other mundane house chores! This book ramped up our wanderlust and opened a whole new trove of historical interest that I'm embarrassed that I didn't know I didn't know. Shame on me for not being a better student of the Americas. This book helped. Enjoy it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steve 06-24-16
    Steve 06-24-16 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good audiobook, but not very in depth adventure."

    Good audiobook, but really more of a collection of short stories and observations than a hard core travel adventure book. Still, well written and clever. Very easy to listen to. finished it in about a week

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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