Summer is almost over—can you believe it?—and any summer wouldn’t be complete without a good road trip! Or at least a good road trip novel. Read on for the inspiration you to sneak in one last trip before it’s back-to-school season and the weather (finally!) drops back down to a more reasonable temperature—we’ve made it easy!
In honor of Quinton Skinner‘s Odd One Out, celebrating it’s first year of being published earlier this spring, we’ve mapped out some of the greatest American road trip books and compared them to Skinner’s family trek to California. (And, luckily, none of them have any kids with puss-filled eyes and sour attitudes… well, Zen & The Art of Motorcycle Matinence might be half-way there.)
1. Odd One Out by Quinton Skinner:
Road Trip Route: Minnesota to California
Best Stop Along the Way: A Kansas City diner
Reason for Going: To bring back their mother, who has fled to Californina.
Best Quote: “All I’m saying is life becomes a lot more interesting when you get rid of clunky ideas like your own death. You already died, I already died. Now it doesn’t feel so bad, does it?”
2. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
Road Trip Route: New York to San Francisco to Mexico City
Best Stop Along the Way: Chicago jazz clubs or meeting Caro Marx in Denver
Reason for Going: No reason, just going (they’re Beatniks, after all).
Best Quote: “Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road.”
3. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig:
Road Trip Route: Minneapolis to San Francisco
Best Stop Along the Way: On the coast of Eureka, CA
Reason for Going: Some good ol’ father and son bonding!
Best Quote: “The only zen you find on the tops of mountains is the zen you bring up there.”
4. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thomson
Road Trip Route: Los Angeles to Las Vegas
Best Stop Along the Way: The Beverly Hills Hotel
Reason for Going: Drugs? (If you attempt this road trip, we think you can probably come up with something better!)
Best Quote: “We can’t stop here, this is bat country!”
So there you have it! Whether you are reading The Road or just hitting the road, there are plenty of trips to take this August—but you better get a move on!