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Publisher's Summary

A Wall Street Journal bestseller.

Stuck in a job he no longer found fulfilling, journalist Mike McIntyre felt his life was quickly passing him by. So one day he hit the road to trek from one end of the country to the other with little more than the clothes on his back and without a single penny in his pocket. Through his travels, he found varying degrees of kindness in strangers from all walks of life-and discovered more about people and values and life on the road in America than he'd ever thought possible. The gifts of food and shelter he received along the way were outweighed only by the touching gifts of the heart-the willingness of many he met to welcome a lonely stranger into their homes...and the discovery that sometimes those who give the most are the ones with the least to spare.

Audiobook includes an interview with author Mike McIntyre.

©1996, 2010, 2014 Mike McIntyre (P)2014 Mike McIntyre

Critic Reviews

"Could you survive a cross-country trip relying only on the kindness of strangers? Well, Mike McIntyre did. He put our country to the test, and what he found out sure surprised me."-Oprah Winfrey
"An incredible journey."-(CBS News)
"A superb writer."-(Los Angeles Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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    171
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    44
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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  • Story

An amazing journey well told

Where does The Kindness of Strangers rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

My favorite.

What did you like best about this story?

This is a true, heart-felt account that reveals the author's fears and humor, while capturing revealing and interesting stories of the people he meets who want to help him on his journey.

Have you listened to any of Chris Brinkley’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is the first time I have heard Chris and he was excellent. He told the story as if it were his own. Very compelling.

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

What I loved about the book is the range of feelings it elicits. It is laugh-out-loud funny at times and has heart-breakingly sad moments as well. And, it is, hard to stop listening, you can't wait to hear what happens next. The personal stories from the people Mike meets are fascinating and touching.

Any additional comments?

Highly recommend. This is a true tale of adventure, told with humor that gives insight into the lives extraordinary lives of ordinary Americans.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

great

If you could sum up The Kindness of Strangers in three words, what would they be?

Enjoyable, Entertaining, Heartwarming

What did you like best about this story?

I will never forget the people that Mike met on his journey. These were real people with extraordinary stories. The book makes me want to meet new people and hear their stories. I also have more faith in the kindness of strangers. It is the perfect title for the message I took away.

What about Chris Brinkley’s performance did you like?

The narrator was great. I felt like he was telling me his story. At times, I honestly forgot that I was listening to an audiobook. He made the story and those characters come to life.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, and I almost did. I was travelling when I listened to the book and listened to almost all of it on the trip. I only stopped because I had reached my destination.

Any additional comments?

The interview with the author at the end of the book was a nice surprise. Hearing the narrator and author discuss the book was great. It made me want to listen to it again. And, I probably will soon.

17 of 20 people found this review helpful

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Interesting, but dated

While the audio recording is new (2014), the book itself was written back in the 1990s. While it was an okay book, the fact that it is so old makes it far less desirable.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

Great American journey

This is a great adventure book. The narrator did such a great job that I forgot he didn't actually write this book. I really enjoyed the interview between the narrator and author at the end.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • JW
  • Prescott, AZ, United States
  • 12-27-14

Excellent Book

What did you like best about this story?

I thought the author did a great job of establishing a "feel" for the different sections of our country. Also with each day of his journey, it's a new and different short story.

I think it was interesting how he came to realize one of he key personal cynicisms, (I won't create a spoiler here) was probably too intense, if not misplaced.

It's amazing that time and again...the people with the least...give the most.

Any additional comments?

The epilogue interview with the author was a wonderful surprise. It provided a look back and answered a lot of questions I think listeners, including me, would have.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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I was entranced through the journey

Felt like I was walking next to him. I loved every detail and his passion for his cause and to complete his mission. There were moments that I help my breath waiting to see what was going to happen, I laughed and cried. Highly recommend!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

A Lone Adventure... but not like Wild

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not sure. I thought this would be more like a self awareness journey, like WILD, but instead it was something else entirely.

Has The Kindness of Strangers turned you off from other books in this genre?

No, I still think this is a good topic.

Have you listened to any of Chris Brinkley’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I do not think so.

Did The Kindness of Strangers inspire you to do anything?

It made me think of the kindness of others, however some of the encounters are scary and honestly... weird, so no... I wont be doing anything like this ;)

Any additional comments?

Kindness of Strangers is about accepting help from others. Mike McIntyre sets out on his adventure determined to use no money but to rely on the kindness of strangers. For the most part his adventure is not a hard one. He often finds shelter, food, and in some cases more than in needed.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great if dated

Loved the concept and story. But is the country still generous 20 years later? The epilogue was valuable for filling in the authors motivations and telling us about his writing/ mailing of manuscript to keep it safe.
The nagging question is the minorities who only briefly appear in the book. Guess you would need another "Black Like Me" story to blend into their world. The poor seem tucked away out of sight. They were not the focus of Author's journey. Perhaps other books will be inspired by author's achievement.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Easy Listening

Would you listen to The Kindness of Strangers again? Why?

Yes, I enjoyed hearing stories about how all the different people lived their lives.

What other book might you compare The Kindness of Strangers to and why?

A Walk Across America by Peter Jenkins.

Which character – as performed by Chris Brinkley – was your favorite?

Arnie -- The Ex-Marine / Ex-Basketball coach

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

Any additional comments?

Chris Brinkley was easy listening.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Real reporter was authentic in his story. THANKYOU

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

The reporter had opinions, however, they didn't taint his reporting-ability in this story.
He reported what others said and how he responded and we filled in the rest. perfecto!

What did you like best about this story?

heartland "crunchy around the outside, soft on the inside". Makes me want to move to the midwest.

Have you listened to any of Chris Brinkley’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

no

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yup. it kept me entertained all the way through.

Any additional comments?

I liked the out-takes at the end; it wrapped it up. You gave everyone a good report.
Thanks for sharing your story.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Helen W.
  • 07-31-16

An inspirational read.

A totally absorbing and uplifting read, where those with the least are prepared to give so much. Brlliantly narrated.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-24-15

wow loved it

liked interview at end had to giggle in a few places. brave inspiring thing to do was verry compelling liked all the way through x

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Joanne
  • 07-15-17

Good concept, well written, interesting story

Would you listen to The Kindness of Strangers again? Why?

yes - I always listen to my books more than once as you can gain more of a feel for the author and find bits you may have "missed" before

What did you like best about this story?

I liked the concept of depending on other people and seeing how these people react to the fact he has no money or possessions

What about Chris Brinkley’s performance did you like?

Nice smooth voice, not irritating or too loud

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

In parts it made me chuckle, I didn't full belly laugh just small chuckles - it's not sad enough to make you cry although it does make you think about different parts of society and how they react to him

Any additional comments?

I would recommend this book - its not a life changing book or a great literary read - its just a good enjoyable to "read" (listen too) book and has some good points to ponder and discus with friends

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  • PhilipVince
  • 02-05-17

Fantastic opportunity to join a traveller

Brilliantly narated, this emotional tale of a man who was brave enough to travel penniless.

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  • must be the monkey
  • 01-14-17

Good read, well written and an original and interesting idea

I really enjoyed this, the idea of travelling coast to coast without money is incomprehensible and so reading how he did it was interesting and the characters he met along the way were entertaining and touching in equal measures. I really enjoyed the additional author interviews at the end of the book too, I felt they added real value as you were left wondering what happened afterwards and whether he stayed in touch with any of the kind folks that he met along the way

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  • Adrian S
  • 07-31-15

Great travelogue

Great story, amazing narration, wonderful interview at the end! 20 years on, still an incredible adventure trough the rural roads of forgotten America. Highly recommend!

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  • Katie
  • 10-08-15

An insight into the real America

Despite the limitations of McIntyre being a middle class, clean shaven white guy, this is a wonderfully uplifting account of humanity. I particularly appreciated McIntyre's quip that for the first time in his life he knew what it felt like to be defenseless like a woman. And how true that it's often the people with the least to give who give the most. Brinkley's interview of McIntyre 20 years after the publication of the book was a great extra.

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