a book review
This book is next month’s book club book at Grand Island Memorial Library
I signed up to be a discussion leader for the monthly book club that meets at the local library. All I knew was that I was to lead the discussion in February. In fact, on Valentine’s Day. I didn’t know anything about the book, other than its title and author. I had never read anything by this author, although his previous book, “A Gentleman in Moscow,” was very successful, and I think that I had heard of that book.
I am now a little more than halfway through this book and am ready to share some reflections.
“The Lincoln Highway” is a book that speaks to my heart. It is about yearning, unfulfilled dreams, and the pull of the open road. It is about wanderlust and the hope that whatever is on the other side of the rainbow will be better than what we have now. It’s about adventure and discovery and people, from an insightful eight-year-old boy who finds the answers to the puzzles of the world in his book of adventurous heroes to a World War II veteran who had been riding the rails since he returned to a land of racism and rejection from the violence of war eight years earlier. It’s about three boys who had served time in a work camp and who experienced their wanderlust in different ways.
This book reminds me of my own time traveling via bus, train, airplane, and on foot in different places, maybe because of the pull of the open road. I have walked through rural areas and into suburbs and cities, with groups and on my own. I have visited art museums and historical museums on these journeys. I have waded into the Mississippi River and the Atlantic Ocean (not on the same trip because I know that someone will ask me about that). I have walked into corn fields and have walked on bike paths during thunderstorms and, during the storm, sang rain songs with a music teacher.
I have learned that, when you’re feeding your wanderlust, it is the journey that matters more than the destination. It is the people you meet along the way who change you. It’s the things that you see that broaden your horizons. It’s also about being open to experiencing the unknown aspects of the adventure that help you to grow and to become the you that you will be, once that particular adventure is over.
I have yet to finish the book. But, in the meantime, I am happy to experience the adventure, along with the characters in the story.
If you have time to read, I would recommend “The Lincoln Highway” to take you on a vicarious adventure. I think that you will enjoy this adventure, as you travel alongside these very appealing characters.