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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Hitting the Road Without a Map is a work of non-fiction in the memoir subgenre. It is best suited to mature readers owing to some instances of explicit language use and was penned by author Fred Rutter about an incredible cross-country journey and the impact it had on his life. When Fred is paired up with an unlikely companion and tasked to deliver an RV on an epic journey from Ohio to Oregon, so begins a journey of personal introspection against the backdrop of the American West. What results is a soul-searching and touching memoir that celebrates all the joy that can be found in life if we step outside our own little worlds to appreciate it.
Author Fred Rutter delivers a candid, heartfelt, and wonderfully entertaining memoir about his changing perspective on life, and this volume is exactly what memoirs should deliver in terms of its atmosphere, message, and reading experience. I was floored by how raw and honest the narrative is, with no holds barred on discussing personal demons and struggles that need to be overcome. The way this is juxtaposed with the humorous dialogue, interplay of characters, and the gorgeous scenery and celebration of America just sets the perfect mood so that nothing ever becomes too depressing or heavy to read. I also felt that the illustrations, maps, and images included made it very easy to imagine where sharp conversations and moments of poignant clarity are taking place. Overall, I would certainly recommend Hitting the Road Without a Map to fans of road-trip memoirs who also want a lot of truth and heart.