The funniest road trip memoirs

The Books I Picked & Why

Marie Potter and The Campervan of Doom

By Brian Burke

Marie Potter and The Campervan of Doom

Why this book?

Brian and his wife Marie (pronounced Marry) embark on a two-year epic road trip around Europe in Gemima the Hymer, an RV who would definitely have preferred to stay at home.  

Even without a Camper Van of Doom, resilience and a sense of humour are essential travel companions. With the scrapes these two get in, they needed plenty of both. I laughed out loud at the imaginative turns of phrases used to describe the tribulations, destinations, and people they met. This book stands out as one of the funniest I’ve ever read.


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The Sat Nav Diaries

By Adrian Sturrock

The Sat Nav Diaries

Why this book?

The author bought a Mazda sports car on a whim, which prompted him to plan a mid-life road trip through Europe. His wife Nat decided to go along for the ride, and I am so glad she did. The banter between them is like a comedy double act. 

Road trip memoirs are frequently a catalogue of calamities, a search for self, or a directory of delectable destinations. This book is notably devoid of disasters and empty of ‘eureka' moments. In fact, very little actually happens…  

Yet in a series of wry observations, witty perspectives, and entertaining sketches, Adrian captures the flavour of the trip masterfully, with huge belly laughs thrown in. I can’t wait to read more from this thoughtful, funny writer.


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Vroom With a View : In Search of Italy's Dolce Vita on a '61 Vespa

By Peter Moore

Vroom With a View : In Search of Italy's Dolce Vita on a '61 Vespa

Why this book?

Vroom With A View is a giggle-filled rev around Italy aboard a vintage Vespa motor scooter. 

I am a born-again Italian. In the same way I love everything about Italy, I loved everything about this book. Good travel writing makes you want to jump out of your chair and hit the road yourself. From the snippets of history about an Italian classic, the Vespa motor scooter, to the descriptions of wonderful off-the-beaten-path places and the irrepressible kindness and spirit of the Italian people, I defy you not to want to sample la vita Italiana after reading this book!


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Three Men in a Float: Across England at 15 mph

By Dan Kieran, Ian Vince

Three Men in a Float: Across England at 15 mph

Why this book?

Entry into the Mongol Rally from Europe to Ulan Ude in Russia requires a car with a maximum engine size of 1.0 litre. The premise is that such a farcically inappropriate vehicle will invite adventure and interaction with locals. 

Obviously, a 600-mile odyssey across southern Britain in an elderly electric milk float, with unreliable batteries and a top speed of 15 mph invites all kinds of mishaps.

Comedy writers Dan and Ian tackle alternate chapters. Since Dan authored the bestselling trilogy Crap Towns: a guide to the worst towns in Britain, there is plenty of off-the-wall detail about the places they passed through. Reliant on the kindness of strangers and third man Pras, an electrician with magical powers, this is a gently comic, informative, and quirky alternative to Jerome K. Jerome’s classic.


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Not Tonight, Josephine: A Road Trip Through Small-Town America

By George Mahood

Not Tonight, Josephine: A Road Trip Through Small-Town America

Why this book?

Impecunious Brits George and his friend Mark decide to search for the ‘real’ America, crossing the continent from east to west in a clapped-out old car. 

At every point, amid clouds of smoke, impending mechanical Armageddon, and brushes with the law, it seems unlikely that they’ll make it. One night, in the middle of nowhere, when ominous sounds emanating from the engine, George pleads, “Not tonight, Josephine…!”

The author has a humorous conversational style and paints an unforgettable portrait of the unlikely places he passed through. I thoroughly enjoyed this bump-start, clunk, and judder across the States with the frustrating but lovable Josephine!


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