Reviewed by: BigAl
Genre: Travel Memoir
Approximate word count: 105-110,000 words
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“Carolyn has been a psychologist, a paramedic, a proof reader and several other things, not all of them beginning with P. A trucker, for example. She began writing the day she decided to try and see the world...doing both just to find out if she could. It made a change from teaching CPR to nightclub bouncers and designing wedding cakes. When excerpts from her first travelogue were published by the Rough Guides, she decided to keep on doing both. Carolyn maintains that she is either multi-faceted or easily bored, depending on who is enquiring. Born and bred in London, England, Carolyn and her son Ben are now Canadian citizens and live permanently in Kitchener, Ontario.”
For more, visit Steele’s website.
“This is the tale of what happens when a middle-aged mum from England decides to actually drive 18-wheelers across North America instead of just dreaming about it. From early training (when it becomes apparent that negotiating 18 wheels and 13 gears involves slightly more than just learning how to climb in) this rookie overcomes self-doubt, infuriating companions and inconsiderate weather to become a real trucker. She learns how to hit a moose correctly and how to be hijacked. She is almost arrested in Baltimore Docks and survives a terrifying winter tour of The Rockies. Nothing goes well, but that's why there's a book.”
What a great job, right? Cruising the open road, traveling all over North America, and getting paid for it. There have been times when I’ve thought this would be the perfect job for me. A few stints driving the biggest truck Uhaul rents, which are half the size of a typical 18-wheeler, and a few horror stories from a former brother-in-law who is a trucker, hinted that this profession might not be as easy as it looks. Carolyn Steele completed the task of convincing me this might not be the job for me.
This humorous account of Steele’s time as a trucker, from truck driving school and on into her time as a long-haul trucker, is an adventure I enjoyed experiencing the easy way, vicariously. It gave me a new level of respect for those who practice this profession, and you can be sure I’ll be giving those 18-wheelers a wide berth when I’m on the road. Not only a fun read but, for anyone considering a career as a trucker, a must read.
Uses UK spelling conventions. (Possibly Canadian, which is a hybrid of UK and US conventions.)
A small number of minor typos.
Rating: **** Four stars