Don't Make Me Pull Over!

Narrated by: Jonathan Todd Ross
Length: 8 hrs and 36 mins
Categories: History, Americas
4.2 out of 5 stars (116 ratings)

Audible Premium Plus

$14.95 a month

1 audiobook of your choice.
Stream or download thousands of included titles.
$14.95 a month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.
Buy for $17.00

Buy for $17.00

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Part pop history and part whimsical memoir in the spirit of National Lampoon's Vacation - Don’t Make Me Pull Over! is a nostalgic look at the golden age of family road trips - a halcyon era that culminated in the latter part of the 20th century, before portable DVD players, iPods, and Google Maps.

In the days before cheap air travel, families didn’t so much take vacations as survive them. Between home and destination lay thousands of miles and dozens of annoyances, and with his family Richard Ratay experienced all of them - from being crowded into the backseat with noogie-happy older brothers, to picking out a souvenir only to find that a better one might have been had at the next attraction, to dealing with a dad who didn’t believe in bathroom breaks.

The birth of America's first interstate highways in the 1950s hit the gas pedal on the road trip phenomenon and families were soon streaming - sans seatbelts! - to a range of sometimes stirring, sometimes wacky locations. Frequently, what was remembered the longest wasn’t Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone, or Disney World, but such roadside attractions as “The Thing” in Texas Canyon, Arizona, or “The Mystery Spot” in Santa Cruz, California. In this road tourism-crazy era that stretched through the 1970s, national parks attendance swelled to 165 million, and a whopping 2.2 million people visited Gettysburg each year, 13 times the number of soldiers who fought in the battle.

Now, decades later, Ratay offers a paean to what was lost, showing how family togetherness was eventually sacrificed to electronic distractions and the urge to "get there now". In hundreds of amusing ways, he reminds us of what once made the Great American Family Road Trip so great, including 20-foot “land yachts”, oasis-like Holiday Inn “Holidomes”, “Smokey"-spotting Fuzzbusters, 28 glorious flavors of Howard Johnson’s ice cream, and the thrill of finding a “good buddy” on the CB radio.

A rousing Ratay family ride-along, Don’t Make Me Pull Over! reveals how the family road trip came to be, how its evolution mirrored the country’s, and why those magical journeys that once brought families together - for better and worse - have largely disappeared 

©2018 Richard Ratay (P)2018 Simon & Schuster

Critic Reviews

"Narrator Jonathan Ross delightfully handles the first-person narrative about piling into the family land yacht and driving across the country. Ross speaks with tongue in cheek about squabbling siblings, overconfident dads, questioning moms, and landmarks such as giant balls of string and even large animal statues.... This is a great book to listen to on just such a trip." (AudioFile)

More from the same

What listeners say about Don't Make Me Pull Over!

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    59
  • 4 Stars
    35
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    54
  • 4 Stars
    35
  • 3 Stars
    9
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    47
  • 4 Stars
    31
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    6
  • 1 Stars
    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it! Super for Oldsters!

I loved this fun and informative book that even surpassed my expectations. It was a great "drive" down memory lane, full of relatable anecdotes and lots of history. I can't recommend this one enough! Excellent narration, too.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful memories

Great stories interspersed with history of of great family vacations in the 1960s and 1970s. Highly recommended!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Nostalgia and Interesting History

Of you are of a certain age. Say 40-55, this book will bring back memories of your childhood. It was fun to walk or should I say drive down memory lane. Ironically, I listened to this book on my latest road trip. Not only was there nostalgia fun, but lots of interesting tid bits explaining why the 1970's road trip came to be and why it eventually disappeared.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Yep! That's what it was like.

I really enjoyed this one, It was all those trying times sitting in the middle of the back seat (middle child syndrome) in my parents' car and then the not quite instant replay of trips with my own family (at least I was riding shotgun now) twenty years later. Some observations made me smile and others groan and even a few that made me angry all over again. All were too true and brought back lots of memories. Had to call my sisters to relive a few of the funnier ones.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

fascinating and fun story

I loved the stories that took me back to my youth. Ironic that we listened to this while on a road trip.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

don't make me pull over

This book brought back memories that made me laugh. it answered some questions like "whatever happened to Howard Johnsons motels".

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Not funny stories

As the sample let me to believe this book is not about funny stories from driving across country. It’s a history lesson on roads and cars. Not exactly what I thought it was.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Ready to hit the road

This book makes me yearn to kid out on the open road with my kids. I enjoyed the diversity of subjects in this book. It’s neat to learn how many different influences from culture to technology impacted the family road trip.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Terrible

This book is very boring and the narrator will put you to sleep. There is really not even a storyline to the book. I fell asleep during the first chapter.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brings back memories

As the survivor of many 1980's station wagon road trips with my parents this book brought smile after smile while reminiscing about my childhood.