• The Long Haul

  • A Trucker's Tales of Life on the Road
  • By: Finn Murphy
  • Narrated by: Danny Campbell
  • Length: 8 hrs
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (1,285 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

More than 30 years ago, Finn Murphy dropped out of college to become a trucker. Since then he's covered hundreds of thousands of miles packing, loading, and hauling people's belongings all over America. Murphy whisks listeners down the I-95 Powerlane, across the Florida Everglades, in and out of the truck stops of the Midwest, and through the steep grades of the Rocky Mountains. He tells funny, poignant, and haunting stories of the people he moves: a hoarder in New Hampshire, a Virginia homeowner raging when Murphy's truck accidentally runs down a stand of trees, a widow rushing her archaeologist husband's remains and relics to a Navajo burial ceremony in New Mexico. Brimming with personality and great characters, The Long Haul explores the appeal of manual labor and shows what happens behind the scenes when we call the movers.

©2017 Finn Murphy (P)2017 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

What listeners say about The Long Haul

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Baloney

As a former long-haul trucker myself, I obviously had a bias to enjoy Finn Murphy. I couldn't.

Number one, he makes up BS for no other reason than to make himself sound more interesting: I hate to break it to you, but no, the waitresses at truck stops do not treat drivers differently based on the type of cargo they haul. They don't know or care. 90% of drivers don't use CB radios anymore; cell phones have made them nearly obsolete. And when he tells you he drove Florida to Connecticut in 2 days ... well, he's either lying or confessing to DOT violations. Which is pretty funny given how he brags on his professionalism.

Stealing an couple old trucker jokes and making them into an "true stories" is a venial error ... but plagarizing a Mark Twain gag and passing it off as a real experience that happened to him (the 202/2002 bit he claims happened on his first day)? That's a mortal sin.

More fundamentally, he just comes off as unlikable, a misanthropic curmudgeon, He doesn't think much of other drivers, what with their belt buckles and cowboy boots. He also makes it plain he doesn't think much of most of his high-end C-suite customers. He casts shade of some sort or another on suburbanites, southerners, and military members. He does go out of his way to describe every African-American he meets as deeply wise, elegant, dignified, etc.

It all came together when he began discussing NPR. And how every driver he knows just loves tuning in Terry Gross on the radio all over the country. Which is just hilarious. Firstly, because nearly every driver has a SiriusXM and/or apps on their phone for podcasts/radio/audiobooks. Nobody is gonna want to keep flipping dials to get a new station every 50 miles, which is the scene he paints. Secondly ... have you met any truckers? They ain't the NPR audience. Rush Limbaugh would be much more like it. Most wouldn't know Terry Gross from Terrycloth. I literally laughed out loud at the absurdity.

But then I thought, and I looked it up ... and sure enough, Ol' Finn's agent scored him an on-air interview with Terry Gross, and probably sold a lot of books as a result. And honestly, those folks probably enjoyed his "stories" more than they would have a more accurate depiction. Got to respect his hustle.

Alas, for me, I couldn't go on, and exited at that point. Will be asking for a refund.



62 people found this helpful

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Came for the Stories, surprised by the life wisdom

The life of a long haul mover is naturally full of interesting stories from the road, and these are in the book. But Finn Murphy is not only a mover, but a man who has taken the injuries and insults of life, and translated them into the practical philosophies that any of us can use to make our own way. Most people don't like movers, they represent the stress of a major life change, and you just don't trust people with your stuff. Have you ever heard a good mover story? Finn always makes it a point to introduce himself and his crew, and reassure the client that they are professionals, and will do all they can to move the items safely and in a timely manner. He personalizes the job with names and faces rather than simply be objectified as "the Mover". Finn notes that we all have to much stuff, and will pay big bucks to move random junk that is not really needed, and could be donated and later replaced for less money. He also shows that the truck industry is truly "equal opportunity" His life is a clear demonstration that while we may fail sometimes, we can learn from mistakes, and build character by getting back on our feet. Finn is a well read man, who knows the human condition, and can write about it. And he closes his book with a story which you will never forget. Great narrator, great listen.

15 people found this helpful

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Finn Murphy should have narrated this

I was intrigued with Finn Murphy’s story after listening to his interview with Terry Gross on Fresh Air. He’s clearly a fascinating guy, with a sharp wit and convivial charm to boot. Unfortunately the narration here failed to remotely capture Murphy’s “voice” or essence, and ruined the book for me. This narrator is better suited for more serious fare perhaps; Finn Murphy has a great sense of humor and an interesting story to tell here, but the narration rendered the book a snooze fest. The audible version would have been much much better served had Finn Murphy narrated it himself. So disappointed.

14 people found this helpful

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A Nice Slice of Life Story

I sometimes like to get a book I normally would not choose. It is a good way to find new authors or just a something different. The Long Haul was just such a book. My Dad and my older Brother made a living as truck drivers so this book caught my attention.

Within the trucking industry, there are specialists. For example, my Dad hauled lumber and my Brother hauled heavy equipment. Finn Murphy's specialty is moving. You know, the guys who load everything in your house into a big truck trailer and move it to your new house.

In his book, Finn tells us that movers, called Bed Buggers by other truckers, are the lowest in the trucking industry pecking order, then tells us that it is one of the best paying jobs in trucking. But the book isn't a how-to or recruiting tool. It is an insight to truckers and the trucking lifestyle through well-written and compelling anecdotes from Murphy's many years and miles on the road.

If like me, you sometimes like to read something different, I recommend The Lone Haul.

11 people found this helpful

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A Hidden Treasure

I had never heard of this book or of Finn Murphy before however I heard him being interviewed on a podcast so thought that with the Audible return policy (if you don't like it, return it!) I decided that I had nothing to lose.

This is a real little hidden treasure. Finn tells us how he, a college bound young man decides to walk away from academia and the comforts of his middle class life in order to become a road warrior.

So many tales to tell. Not all of them happy and some made me reach for the Kleenex. Also I was very interested to learn a little about the world of logistics. So much more to the 'moving business'. Had I known perhaps I would have been a little nicer and perhaps kinder to our movers of the years. There have been many moves and I blush when I think about how grumpy and unwelcoming I was.

A thoroughly enjoyable listen enhanced by a lovely performance by Danny Campbell.

10 people found this helpful

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The Call of the Open Road

Finn Murphy is a guy who skipped his last year of college to fulfill his dream of becoming a trucker. After decades specializing as a long-haul driver for high-end executive moves, and making good money, he’s written a book about some of his adventures. It’s more interesting and articulate than the term “truck driver” might imply, maybe because he’s spent thousands of hours listening to NPR and audiobooks on his travels. But he was also a bright college kid who opted to follow his passion for the open road.

The stories are good ones, often funny, and fun listening. Along the way, you’ll learn a lot about the tricks of the trade—things you might use the next time you find yourself making a move.

Danny Campbell’s reading is warm and friendly, and makes for easy listening.

6 people found this helpful

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Shines a whole new light on moving industry

Would you listen to The Long Haul again? Why?

"The Long Haul" was a fun and often fascinating account about an industry of which I knew almost nothing. The performance of the book was very good, and it kept me eager to hop back in my car to keep listening. Murphy's description of minute details in the industry could be seen as dull and boring, but his adept writing style seamlessly weaves these into a beautiful narrative that made me grateful for learning these specifics. I did really feel that I learned much from the book, beyond it providing a great deal of pleasure. I look forward to listening to it again and again, and I'm sure others will, too.

What other book might you compare The Long Haul to and why?

It's interesting that "The Long Haul" would probably be considered a road story, yet there is so much depth to it that it almost seems unfair to pigeon hole it in any single category. It reminded me of some of the great works of fiction I've read in the past - yet this story was undoubtedly real.

Which character – as performed by Danny Campbell – was your favorite?

The only real constant character in the book is Finn Murphy himself, but we are introduced to a number of folks who pass through along the way. Finn is a person with great depth and complexity. He carries this book quite well.

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

There were many moments where I laughed aloud, or was quite touched. I think perhaps the most moving parts were those in which Murphy explains the lives of long-haul movers, and how we as the American public tend to treat them as faceless parts of an untrustworthy industry. I know I am guilty of this myself. It made a great impact on me that Mr. Murphy held a mirror up to our faces and spelled out quite well that movers are like anyone else, and have feelings just like us all, and deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.

12 people found this helpful

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Engrossing, arrogant, annoying, but I liked it.

I got this based on an NPR or NYT review, and found it to be really interesting and also really unsatisfying. It is a first-person account by a somewhat educated guy who has chosen the life of a long-haul household mover, and he plainly considers himself superior to his professional peers. That is annoying enough, but he is also oddly angry about a lot of things, snd reveals almost nothing about himself, his personal life, or why he is so cranky. His mission, in this book, is to enlighten the public about all that goes into a household move. It is a combination of explication of the terms, the meticulous details, and the expectations of movers and anecdotes about particularly weird moves. It is a world most of us know nothing about, and so very interesting, but the author himself, with his high opinion of himself, is not particularly likeable.

5 people found this helpful

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Amazing book!

great book and narration. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting a bird's eye view of America

16 people found this helpful

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Extremely enjoyable audible

This is a great audible for anyone. I had no idea what being a long haul mover entailed. This book entwined the details throughout a colorful story with interesting characters. The reader is extremely pleasant to hear. I plan to listen to this one again!!

4 people found this helpful