Customer Reviews for

Travel Writing

Average Rating 4
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  • Posted October 22, 2009

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    Loved It

    Pete Ferry is a teacher who also works as a newspaper travel writer. One day he starts telling his students a story of a man named Pete Ferry who witnessed a woman named Lisa Kim, a stranger, crash her car and die. The police think it's an accident, but Pete thinks there is more to it than that. He can't seem to stop thinking about her and ends up going to her funeral, where her family mistakes him for the boyfriend they never met. He doesn't tell them any different and they give him a letter Lisa wrote to "P", telling him how much she loves him. This sets Pete on a mission to find "P". All this time and energy he is spending on finding out more about Lisa is putting a strain on his relationship with his girlfriend, but he can't seem to stop. He feels he must find out the truth. This book covers it all. There is mystery, romance, humor and suspense. I thought this book was very good, especially for a first time author. I am still trying to figure out if this is a true story or not. I loved this book and will probably read again. I'll also be on the lookout for more books by Peter Ferry.

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  • Posted October 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Fact of fiction

    Peter Ferry, narrator in Travel Writing, is a high school English teacher and part-time travel writer. In an effort to inspire his somewhat apathetic students, he tells them a story about an incident that happened to him on his way home. Peter was driving behind an obviously impaired driver. When they reached a stop light, there was a brief moment of eye contact with the stunning woman driver, then the other vehicle sped away and Peter witnessed the deadly crash of the other car and the death of its driver Lisa Kim. He believes he may have been able to prevent the car crash and embarks on a mission to discover Lisa Kim's history and what may have led to her accident. The mission soon turns to into an obsession which threatens to destroy his job and his relationship. Peter attends Lisa Kim's funeral. meets members of her family under false pretenses, searches for an ex-boyfriend, and investigates her doctor who seems to have somehow contributed to her death. The book not only tells the story of Peter's preoccupation, it also is s study into the disintegration of the relationship with his long-term girlfriend mixed with discussions with his friends and flashbacks to his some of his travels.

    When Peter's students recognize the name of a counselor and some other characters, they ask Peter whether the story is true. Peter explains that some but not all of the elements are based on facts.

    "I don't understand," says Nick.
    "Well, it just works better that way," I say.
    "I'm not sure I agree," says the girl whose hair is blue today, "and I definitely don't buy this hypnotism stuff. That sounds hokey to me. Sounds like Seinfeld or something."
    "But that's the part that's true," I say. "Gene really does use hypnotism and he really did use it on me."
    "Now let's see," says Nick. "You put something in that isn't true because it works better, and you put something in that doesn't work because it's true. I'm not sure you can have it both ways."
    "Sure I can; it's my story," I say.

    Sounds like a pretty straight-forward book. Then you realize that Peter Ferry, author of Travel Writing, is also a high school English teacher and part-time travel writer. This brings up the question - is the story of Lisa Kim based on an experience of the author? Did he actually jeopardize his relationships? Did he tell this story to one of his English classes.

    Travel Writing is a truly creative work. I was caught up in the story and caught up in the question of how blurry is the line between fact and fiction.

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  • Posted September 27, 2009

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    terrific debut

    Pete Ferry, our narrator, teaches high school English in the wealthy Chicago suburb of Lake Forest and moonlights as a travel writer. On his way home after work one evening he witnesses a car accident that kills a beautiful woman named Lisa Kim. But was it an accident? Could Pete have prevented it? And did it actually happen, or is this just an elaborate tale he concocts to impart the power of story to his teenage students? Why can't he stop thinking about Lisa Kim? And what might his obsession with her mean to his relationship with his girlfriend, Lydia?
    With humor, tenderness, and suspense, Travel Writing takes readers on fascinating journeys, both geographical and psychological, and delves into the notion that the line between fact and fiction is often negotiable.

    The story starts with Pete Ferry telling his students a story about driving home one night and the accident of a woman named Lisa Kim. Ferry becomes obsessed with this woman he didn't know, wondering how the accident could have been prevented at various times in the evening by those that encountered her. He then takes us back through his past, from college to his travels to Mexico, Thailand and then back to the present. He is trying to track down another Peter Carey that was involved with Lisa Kim.

    This was a very interesting novel and hard to tell which is the "truth" and which parts are made up by Peter Ferry the storytelling teacher, trying to engage his students. Though I got lost a bit as the plot moves around, I think that was the author's intention. Part mystery, part travel guide, part one man's obsession, this book is never boring and left me still wondering when the book came to the end. It was very well written, humorous, and creative. It was very enjoyable and refreshing.

    my rating 4/5

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  • Posted September 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Travel Writing

    An interesting concept; the author and the lead character have the same name and similar lives. Makes you wonder if there is truth in this fictional story. I enjoyed "Travel Writing" as it Peter Ferry has a way of writing that pulls you in. I liked the way he begins with Ferry (the character) teaching a writing class and conversing with his students and comes up with what may or may not be a story about the accident of this beautiful woman. It's funny, dramatic, part-mystery, romantic and stimulating.

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