Customer Reviews for

Without Reservations: The Travels of an Independent Woman

Average Rating 4.5
( 51 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(32)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

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1 Star

(3)

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 51 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2004

    Excellent Book

    This is the second time I read this book. I read it 3 years ago before I headed to Europe and while cleaning out my storage room, I found the book and have not been able to put it down. Alice does an excellent job recounting her memories of the time she spent in Europe. She paints a vivid picture with lots of detail that I lost myself daily envisioning myself living through her story. I highly recommend this book. Through her, I live vicarously until I can once again travel to Europe.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 29, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Travel memoir but not for type A travelers!

    Dear Alice,
    Each morning I am awakened by the sound of a tinkling bell. A cheerful sound, it reminds me of the bells that shopkeepers attach to their doors at Christmastime. In this case, the bell marks the opening of the hotel door. From my room, which is just off the winding staircase, I can hear it clearly. It reminds me of the bell that calls to worship the novice embarking on a new life. In a way I too am a novice, leaving, temporarily, one life for another.
    Love, Alice"

    At first I was a little leary of reading this travel memoir. I was afraid of my mental comparison to "Under the Tuscan Sun" (which I could not finish). I'm glad I did not pass up the opportunity to travel with Alice across Europe. Alice observes the countries in the way I would like to--to not get caught up in the "big" things we are all are supposed to see but to relish in the small and everyday beauties different countries/cultures have to offer us. In my younger years, whenever I traveled it became all about the perfect photo, or how much stuff I could cram in the day to make the most of my trip. As I've grown older, I've learned to lay off the camera a little more and just sit back and watch. Oh sure, if I only have a day I still might choose to pack a day with sights but I've decided to give myself permission to just "be" and watch others in the same state.

    I love how the author will send herself postcards to remind herself of those tiny, expressive moments years later. This is something I shall have to do in the future. To see a post-card in your own hand, writing about a special moment should surely take you back to that moment.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 20, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Wanderlust!

    Part memoir, part travel log, this is a tale of a woman who decides to give up her quotidian life to travel throughout France, England & Italy for the large part of a year. She writes about the various places she visits, the sights she sees, the people she encounters. She has given up the roles and discovers/finds bits & pieces of her true self along the way. The writing is basic, but good. If you're expecting a big denouement, you won't find it here. But you may just find yourself contemplating life, catching a bit of wanderlust and randomly manifesting travel plans out of the blue.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2013

    This book introduced me to the travel memoir and I wil

    This book introduced me to the travel memoir and I will be eternally grateful.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2011

    Highly recommended to me. So far I agree.

    Was very highly recommended to me by someone who is an avid reader and a traveler. Haven't read much yet, but so far am really enjoying the book. It might be more of a book for a woman.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2009

    great

    I really enjoyed this book I felt like I had gone on a vacation and it led me thru the eyes of the writer into the cities she had gone and the experiences she had. I am looking forward to her next book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2007

    A reviewer

    I enjoyed this book. I respect Alice for making an exciting decision to go to Europe and to travel and spend time with her friends. Her life was being occupied by the only two men in her life. These two men are her two sons. Once they moved on in life, she notices that she had become dependent on them. She wanted much more in life. Being divorced and not completely satisfied,she defined herself as what others thought of herself not really knowing who she really was. I loved how Alice wrote. I am a visual learner and I learned a lot about Europe and its surrounding because of the way she described it. Her writing was so visual and I could picture every scenery, and feeling she felt. She wrote postcards to herself, which not a lot of people would think of doing, but this helped her remember what all she did and saw while she was traveling. A theme that is in this book is discovery. Some dislikes of this book would be that it was not to exciting. I liked this book but it wasn't so good that I could read it again. Someone should read this if they are into travelogues, but if someone is expecting to read more on cullture and the small cities of Europe this is not the book for you. My overall rating is a 4 that it was good book, and I enjoyed how she writes.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2007

    A very charming story.

    I really liked this book. Alice does a very good job telling a travel story that isn't stuffed full of pointless references to important statues. This isn't something like Indiana Jones where every minute is full of excitement and adventure, it's something better. The story if full of personal details that make you feel like you're on the trip with Alice Steinbach. I loved it. If you're looking for an exciting adventure full of boring important statues, however this really isn't the book for you. I plan on buying her first book 'Educating Alice' when I go on vacation this summer.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2001

    A Must Read

    This is an excellent book. It touches on us and how we age and deal with the changes in our lives. Questioning what we really want out of life versus what we get swept up with. I could really relate to her musings about her children aging and enjoying them as men yet missing the times when they were young. I am buying copies to send to female friends for Christmas.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2000

    Very Insightful

    This is one of the most exciting and entertaining travel books I have read. Unlike other travel books, this book is written as a spiritual journey of an unique, talented and independent woman who is not only a successful writer, but also a likable mother, a friendly, well versed, and no- nonsense individual at the time when she is seeking new meanings in her life. As I turn the successive pages of this very well written and easy to read book, I am seeing each different scenery, and encountering many different situations and people as if I am experiencing them by myself with fresh curiosity and the willingness to be educated without prejudice, and to understand the essence of what I am seeing. I especially enjoyed her sojourn in Left Bank of Paris since I, too, stayed in a small hotel in Rue Cassette behind Jardin du Luxembourg for three weeks in early 1970s, endlessly walked around, and became intimately familiar with many little restaurants in St Germain des Pres and its vicinity. I also enjoyed reading about Tuscany since my wife and I dream about visiting there some time before too late. Throughout her travelogue, I feel her implicit longing for and attachment to Naohiro that has sustained her spirit ever since her encounter with him during the train ride to see the paintings of Monet, and Japanese wood prints. I do not believe that I am the only person who would be very much interested in another book of the author that touches upon the

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2000

    Subtle Inspiration Presented with grace and peace

    This journey was easy to travel. Those with like 'baggage' will particularly enjoy. The peace found in reaching a pre-determined goal is the fruit of this lovely personal, yet universal sabbatical. Like a cruise, everyone should have the experience. In spite of a somewhat weak ending, the book left this reader with new strength and determination to re-visit my own goals in life and to make my reservations on the first plane available!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2000

    Embracing Life

    Lovely, enjoyable and poignant. Alice Steinbach has embraced life each day of her travels cloaked in her past, present and future. Interwoven with the beauty of Italy, England, and France are small but powerful insights gleaned from her life and the people in it. This a book you will want to share with anyone that loves life and travel.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2014

    Tony

    Walks to the bar

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2014

    Aaron

    Hey guys

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    Bree

    Hi..

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    Brooklyn

    I never got stitches. Never had time. *shows a four inch long scab, basically* Not a scar in literal terms...

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2013

    Bw

    Lol..i guess

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2013

    Zack

    Anyone want to chat?

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2013

    Sellena to guys

    Wanna chat? Meet me in the hot tub at res 13.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2013

    Synthia

    "Me and my brother?" She frowns apologetically

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 51 Customer Reviews
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