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Download Way Off the Road: Discovering the Peculiar Charms of Small-Town America Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Way Off the Road: Discovering the Peculiar Charms of Small-Town America Audiobook, by Bill Geist Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (286 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Bill Geist Narrator: Patrick Lawlor Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2007 ISBN: 9781400174676
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Celebrated roving correspondent for CBS News Sunday Morning and bestselling author Bill Geist serves up a rollicking look at some small-town Americans and their offbeat ways of life. "In rural Kansas, I asked our motel desk clerk for the name of the best restaurant in the area. After mulling it over, he answered: 'I'd have to say the Texaco, 'cuz the Shell don't have no microwave.'" Throughout his career, Bill Geist's most popular stories have been about slightly odd but loveable individuals. Coming on the heels of his 5,600-mile RV trip across our fair land is Way Off the Road, a hilarious and compelling mix of stories about the folks featured in Geist's segments, along with observations on his twenty years of life on the road. Written in the deadpan style that has endeared him to millions, Geist shares tales of eccentric individuals, such as the ninety-three-year-old pilot-paperboy who delivers to his far-flung subscribers by plane; the Arizona mailman who delivers mail via horseback down the walls of the Grand Canyon; the Muleshoe, Texas, anchorwoman who delivers the news from her bedroom (occasionally wearing her bathrobe); and the struggling Colorado entrepreneur who finds success employing a sewer vacuum to rid Western ranchers of problematic prairie dogs. Geist also takes us to events such as the Mike the Headless Chicken Festival (celebrating an inspiring bird that survived decapitation, hired an agent, and went on the road for eighteen months) and Sundown Days in Hanlontown, Iowa, where the town marks the one day a year when the sun sets directly between the railroad tracks. Along the wacky and wonderful way, Geist shows us firsthand how life in fly-over America can be odd, strangely fascinating, hysterical, and anything but boring. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Geist’s Way Off the Road is a breezy account of his most recent travels off the beaten, and sometimes left-for-dead, paths.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • Geist tells his tales straight, letting the humor come through on its own…. They are refreshing tales about good-hearted people who work hard and without pretension. Chicago Sun-Times
  • “Wise and funny.”

    Chicago Sun Times

  • “Geist genuinely delights in his finds, and readers will, too.”

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 The Reading | 2/20/2014

    " LOVE Bill Geist of CBS SUNDAY MORNING! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kate | 2/5/2014

    " A great road trip book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Virginia Brace | 1/30/2014

    " Fun light read for all ages. Audio version would be great to play on a road trip with the family. Author is a TV personality who travels all over the US visiting small towns and reporting anecdotes in a deadpan humorous way. Great memorable stories about Mike the Headless Chicken from Fruita, CO and the Silver Surfer guy and his family in southern CA. There's a great roadkill story from outside Kansas and others of that ilk. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Baniza | 1/27/2014

    " Interesting book about small town of America "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrea Thorpe | 1/11/2014

    " This...is an original. Well, most of the chapters anyway. I found myself skipping a few, because I just wasn't interested in cow chips or some place that sells "moon" burgers. However, there were some real gems of information in this book. When my husband and I hiked the Grand Canyon back in 2005, we past a mule train heading to the rim. I remember squeezing against the switchback to let the mules by and wondering what they were doing down there without passengers. This book, of all books, answered that question. Apparently, there is a town called Supai, AZ located at the bottom of the canyon. This town is totally isolated from the world and has mail, food and even appliances delivered (in pieces) to the Havasupai Indians daily. I mean, what! So, talk about a slice of history. I was entertained when I saw Celebration, FL, come up as a chapter. I've actually been there in my early 20's. I remember my friend and I pulled into town and thought we were on a movie set. It turns out the town is owned and run by Disney itself and there are strict "rules" as to what goes on both in and out of doors. So, if you're looking for a quirky bunch of tidbits about the good ole' USofA, this is certainly it! Where else can you hear about where lost luggage goes, a town run by one person or a towing museum....come on! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan | 1/5/2014

    " Parts of it dragged a bit, otherwise there was plenty of good parts to keep my attention. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lesley | 12/15/2013

    " Since I enjoy visiting small towns, I enjoyed reading this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jimena | 9/5/2013

    " It's short. It's funny. and I laughed out loud more than once. :o) Didn't change my life, but it got me through some rough commutes home from work! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shannon Kearns | 7/28/2013

    " A charming little book. I got a few chickles here and there. It had some pretty interesting and inspirational stories. Many seem to illustrate the point that with ingenuity and perseverence you can make your life as successful as you want it to be. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Deborah | 7/15/2013

    " Really bizarre and funny ! Bill Geist is a very witty guy. I especially like his descriptions of some of the meals that he and his TV crew ate on the road. If you just want something light and fun to read, this is it ! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robyn | 7/15/2013

    " I did this as an audio book. It was fun in the car...laugh out loud kind of stuff. He reminds me of a mix of Andy Rooney and ? who travelled through small town America and reported his experiences. The author seems like the guy next door who always has good stories to tell. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Denise | 7/8/2013

    " This was a great break from some of the deeper/darker books I have read recently. The chapter on International Falls, MN was a riot. Also, the first chapter, about the town with the stand-still parade. Just goes to show you what people will do to have a good time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Janet | 7/27/2012

    " This was a nice read. Quick and easy to get through. The author is pretty darn clever and witty. There are some pretty interesting little towns in America with some very quirky folks and customs. It was enjoyable to read about my fellow Americans. ;-) "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Myrna Rybczyk | 2/7/2012

    " Maybe it's just the February-March slump, but I found this to be just what I needed. Very, very funny. Sharing a trip anywhere with Geist would be, well, a trip. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Traci | 2/2/2012

    " If you are a regular viewer of CBS Sunday Morning, this book is a review of some of Bill Geist's most amusing segments. I found it very interesting that Bill is not afraid to curse and make jokes about stereotypes. Any guy who paid three legal prostitutes to wash his RV is ok by me. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura | 1/22/2012

    " I laughed so hard reading this book! There are some nutty people out there and the author went out and found them. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lena | 1/13/2012

    " Enjoyable and funny book. While the author seeks out the humor in America's small towns, he laughs with rather than at the characters and the towns. This is a great read for those of us addicted to road trips. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christine | 1/4/2012

    " If you enjoy Bill Geist on CBS Sunday morning, then you'll enjoy this book. It's full of quirky, funny stories about small towns in America. You'll find yourself laughing out loud. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julie | 12/21/2011

    " I'm ready to go on a road trip now. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Doug | 11/25/2011

    " I'm doing this solely by memory a couple of years after reading this, and, quite frankly, I can't come up with a single detail from the book. I don't remember it as being an unpleasant read, however, and Mr. Geist is typically pretty humorous. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 7/17/2011

    " Some interesting stories, but they are much more interesting when you see them on TV rather than just reading them. Bill's delivery adds much to the enjoyment. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance | 7/4/2011

    " One of the first books I read on my Kindle was this book. I did not see the cover at the time, but, now that I see it, I'd have to say that this book falls into the category of Cover-More-Clever-Than-the-Book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tiffany | 5/23/2011

    " A fun listen . . . I missed some great places in my drive around the country! Wish I could have seen figure-8 school bus racing in Florida!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendy | 5/8/2011

    " Great beach read for laugh out loud moments. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Doug | 4/12/2011

    " I'm doing this solely by memory a couple of years after reading this, and, quite frankly, I can't come up with a single detail from the book. I don't remember it as being an unpleasant read, however, and Mr. Geist is typically pretty humorous. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 tbears | 2/28/2011

    " Interesting...had some laugh out loud moments. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 The | 2/20/2011

    " LOVE Bill Geist of CBS SUNDAY MORNING! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lena | 1/11/2011

    " Enjoyable and funny book. While the author seeks out the humor in America's small towns, he laughs with rather than at the characters and the towns. This is a great read for those of us addicted to road trips. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Debbie (Readerbuzz) | 9/4/2010

    " One of the first books I read on my Kindle was this book. I did not see the cover at the time, but, now that I see it, I'd have to say that this book falls into the category of Cover-More-Clever-Than-the-Book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robyn | 4/18/2010

    " I did this as an audio book. It was fun in the car...laugh out loud kind of stuff. He reminds me of a mix of Andy Rooney and ? who travelled through small town America and reported his experiences. The author seems like the guy next door who always has good stories to tell. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan | 3/28/2010

    " Parts of it dragged a bit, otherwise there was plenty of good parts to keep my attention. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Myrna | 3/4/2010

    " Maybe it's just the February-March slump, but I found this to be just what I needed. Very, very funny. Sharing a trip anywhere with Geist would be, well, a trip. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 1/22/2010

    " Some interesting stories, but they are much more interesting when you see them on TV rather than just reading them. Bill's delivery adds much to the enjoyment. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cathy | 10/5/2009

    " Some funny stories, a few laugh out loud bits. An easy light read, great if you want to know more about quirky things going on in some tiny places in the US. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Spencer | 9/25/2009

    " This had a few funny stories.
    Sometimes I think I would like to live in a small town. This book persuaded me that it's not all it's cracked up to be.
    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jimena | 9/9/2009

    " It's short. It's funny. and I laughed out loud more than once. :o) Didn't change my life, but it got me through some rough commutes home from work! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jill | 8/16/2009

    " I listened to this book on CD--an excellent narrator. These stories are charming, and some made me laugh out loud. I enjoyed hearing about all sorts of "celebrations" throughout the US. "

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About the Author

Bill Geist is the New York Times bestselling author of Little League Confidential, The Big Five-Oh, Fore! Play!, and Way Off the Road. He has been a correspondent for CBS News Sunday Morning since he joined CBS News in 1987. He chronicles some of the quirkiest people and places in America for the broadcast and has won two Emmys for his work on the show. To date, one of Bill’s greatest achievements is taking third place in the Illinois State Fair Bake Off in 1979. Geist lives in New York City with his wife. They have two children.

About the Narrator

Patrick Lawlor, an award-winning narrator, is also an accomplished stage actor, director, and combat choreographer. He has worked extensively off Broadway and has been an actor and stuntman in both film and television. He has been an Audie Award finalist multiple times and has garnered several AudioFile Earphones Awards, a Publishers Weekly Listen-Up Award, and many starred audio reviews from Library Journal and Kirkus Reviews.