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Charles Kuralt's America

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  652 Ratings  ·  71 Reviews
Grammy Nominated! "I keep thinking I will find something wonderful just around the bend."

Ever since October 1967, when he set off in a battered motor home to explore America and talk to its people, Charles Kuralt has been one of our premier chroniclers--a man who has helped us see and celebrate our country in a way we never had before.

After retiring from CBS News in 1994,
Paperback, 304 pages
Published September 1st 1996 by Anchor (first published 1995)
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Jan 06, 2013 Jack rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. I enjoy stories about people - heart warming stories about the ups and downs of these common people.

Charles Kuralt, famous for his "On the Road" TV stories, retired from CBS in 1994 and at the age of 59 (he turned 60 while on the road that year) decided to once again see American. The book was divided into 12 chapters. Kuralt wrote about his stay in a particular location for that month - one location per month. I had to laugh - after each chapter I would think "That would be a
Jul 01, 2013 Travelin rated it it was amazing
He spent his life travelling for television, but his most poignant anecdote is his most telling. He is introduced to a young woman lying naked on her bed but demurs. Later that night, the woman rescues him as the motel starts burning down. Towards the end of his travels, he quotes a journalism friend: "Regret is the women you could have known."
Sep 20, 2016 Beth rated it liked it
A different state for each month of the year, Charles takes a look at events and people for that state.
Book Concierge
Charles Kuralt hosted a popular Sunday Morning segment on CBS. I loved that show, and Kuralt’s mellifluous baritone voice overs. This book was written after he had retired from television. He spends an entire year going to different states, spending a full month in each state he visits. What does he do with all this free time? He spends it just hanging out, enjoying the weather and the ambience, connecting with old friends, meeting new friends, eating, fishing and enjoying life in general.

Jul 21, 2008 Carrol rated it really liked it
This book was written by Charles Kuralt the year following his retirement from CBS. His first year of retirement he chose to travel around the country and spend a month in each of his favorite places. His thoughts and experiences in places I've also visited and places I've yet to see were interesting. He had a knack for meeting local folks and absorbing much of the everyday culture of each area. Even though it's nearly 15 years old some of the places have not changed that much. It's an enjoyable ...more
Benjamin Thomas
Jan 23, 2012 Benjamin Thomas rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, travel
I read this one over about a six week period, savoring each chapter as it came. The book is divided into twelve parts, each representing a month wherein Charles Kuralt, long-time CBS newsman and host of his famous "On the Road" segments, visits and absorbs his favorite locales across America. They are all return visits and considering how much travelling he's done in his life, each of these places must be pretty special to be included in this book.

Not only does he visit each location and report
Jul 16, 2008 Dave rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those with wings on their feet.
Shelves: wanderlust, owned
I learned that I should have hustled my way from mid-sized rags out in the sticks to the big city based on my observational qualities and yen for a nomadic life. Then I read this. Charles Kuralt sets the gold standard for purposeful nomads, and this could be considered his "best-of." Instead of his best writing, though, he chronicles his best places at the best times of year. New Orleans before Mardi Gras, Key West before spring break, his native North Carolina in early spring, and so forth. Thi ...more
Chris King
Feb 21, 2012 Chris King rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People who enjoy travel, and experiencing different places, cultures, and ways of life
Recommended to Chris by: Coworker
This book was recommended (and loaned) to me by a coworker. I have to admit that the title and cover were not inspiring. It probably didn't help that I had no idea who Charles Kuralt is. Judging the book by its cover, it looked like it would be boring. I was surprised to find that it was not.

It's a great travelogue-y narrative of the author's visits to a number of different places in the United States.

He interviewed an assortment of regular people along the way, and wove that together with evo
Kuralt left his job of 37 years as a correspondent for CBS, typing a short resignation the same day he felt it was time to go. He then spent a year traveling around the United States--about a month in the following locations:

-New Orleans
-Key West
-Charleston, South Carolina
-Grandfather Mountain, North Carolina
-Ketchikan, Alaska
-Ely, Minnesota
-Boothbay Harbor, Maine
-Twin Bridges, Montana
-Woodstock, Vermont
-Rio Grande Valley, New Mexico
-New York City

Kuralt's keen perception and talent for descripti
Mike Reuther
Apr 22, 2013 Mike Reuther rated it really liked it
Shelves: essays, travel
Charles Kuralt can write. There's no argument from me there. I'm sure there are a lot of readers who loved this book because of his portrayals of people, many of them salt of the Earth sort of folks who can take pride in what they do. However, when I read this book I was hoping to gain more of a sense of the places Kuralt visited in the U.S. Of course, the guy traveled the breadth of America over his long television career, and by the time this book came out, perhaps he was a bit weary of trying ...more
Mike  Davis
May 27, 2011 Mike Davis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, travel
A travelogue of sorts, the book is an interesting look at Kuralt's signature work as a 'commercial visitor' in some of America's most well-known places. He divides his prose equally between a love of places and some of the people he encounters along the way. His celebrity status allows him access at times to places others might not obtain, but he spends most of his time with 'ordinary' people. Overall, he seems an introspective loner, reaching out to the land as much as to its inhabitants. Sadly ...more
May 11, 2009 Jenifer rated it really liked it
Here is a traveler who doesn't go to the biggest attraction around before hitting the road. Mr. Kuralt visited one of his favorite regions each month for a year. He just hangs around town talking to the old-timers and enjoying the weather. January in New Orleans where he raves about the best food ever, October in Vermont - the prime season for seeing the leaves, August in Maine...He goes for a hot-air balloon ride and visits a saddle maker in New Mexico. What a pleasant journey we had together! ...more
Jan 19, 2016 Stacy rated it liked it
If I could read this again, I would do one chapter a month, and savor it more, since that's how the chapters are organized (by month) and clearly, Charles wants you to savor along with him. Instead, I did about a chapter a day, which was much too rushed. I appreciated that Charles wants us to enjoy the finer details, the more obscure bits of our country, and it's blatantly obvious beauty and uniqueness that we take for granted. My only criticism is that the book too often reads like a list. Mr. ...more
I really loved listening to him read this book. It was as vivid as watching his Sunday morning TV show, and I realize I didn't need the images. He really could describe something to a tee. What expertise he had.

Summary: Though he retired from CBS News in 1994, Charles Kuralt has never retired from his wanderings. In this book he sets out to revisit some of his favorite places in their favorite seasons, to rediscover slices of America that have always been closet to his heart. From Montana in Se
Apr 04, 2012 Jane rated it really liked it
My Mom asked me to send this book to my nephew, so of course I had to read it first. I'm a fan of Charles Kuralt so looked forward to his narrative on places he visited during one year. He had the opportunity to spend a month at each destination, longer than many of us can, and got to know the rhythm of the place. His collection of interviews and his writing style make one feel that he/she is along for the journey.

Of course, it helped that I had been most of the places he visited and could pictu
Jul 06, 2013 Annie rated it liked it
What's not to love about Charles Kuralt? However, while I couldn't put the book down, I was disappointed. He profiles in twelve chapters different locales where he has met people who have become his friends. Interesting people, mostly salt-of-the-earth types, but I could not relate to any of the people, and I came away feeling that the wonderful experiences Mr. Kuralt had were only for someone as famous and well-off as Mr. Kuralt. I am glad he loved those places as much as he did in his year of ...more
Kathleen Valentine
Listened to this while working in my studio the last few nights. I always loved Kuralt on CBS Sunday Morning and hearing that deep, sonorous voice of his again nearly made me cry. His stories of traveling the country for a year were delicious. It is always a wonder to me that his love of the unique and the quixotic can weave such a spell you come away from his stories feeling as though what happened to him, happened to you. I loved the part about New Orleans best of all but anyone who knows me c ...more
Dec 16, 2008 Erica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008
I can't be the only one that misses Charles Kuralt. This is really just a little travel journal but I read it slow because every word was read in his "voice." The cadence and tone are so distinctive, if you know his voice, you can't help but to hear it when you read his words.

Makes me want to get in the car and just start driving...stopping in every little town and getting to know the locals. I don't think there are many people that could make you care as much about small towns as Kuralt does t
Feb 28, 2015 Leanna rated it really liked it
Loved this book. First one I have read by Kuralt, but won't be my last. Each chapter is a different place in the US and what I loved was that he wrote about the people. The sense from each place comes from the people that he talked to and had met over the years. No urgency in his travel is felt and he doesn't feel compelled to do much. It makes me long to take the same kind of trip. I'm holding on to this paperback as I think it will be one that I want to read again - maybe when I'm visiting eac ...more
Dec 23, 2009 Ralph rated it liked it
Charles Kuralt's last journey on the roads of America is most poignant because of the fact that the author died 2 years after publication. An intensely private man, who allegedly led a secret double-life as well, Kuralt doesn't provide the kind of introspection or heart-on-the sleeve revelations of, say, a "Blue Highways" that would set this above other Discovering America-esque books, but the writing is elegant and it's impossible not to hear Kuralt's voice speaking the words you're reading.
May 07, 2015 Wendy rated it it was amazing
I was a teenager and I was in a bookstore with my grandfather. He told me to choose any book and he would buy it for me. I chose one, he looked at it and nodded. "I'll buy you that one. And I think you'd like this one too." he said while picking up Charles Kuralt's America. My grandfather was right. I loved this book and it was nothing I would have ever chosen for myself. I can't even remember the other book I chose.
Elizabeth Meadows
I always enjoyed watching Charles Kuralt's "On the Road.." segments on the news when I was a kid. This audio book read by him, really took me back to those times sitting with my Grandma watching where in the country he was reporting from and what interesting people he was interviewing. This book is just as wonderful as those old news segments with vivid descriptions of interesting people and places that you can visualize with just his words.
Oct 12, 2007 Andrés rated it really liked it
In twelve month Mr Kuralt takes the reader to twelve different regions of America. He is definitely most interested in Everyman's stories, in seeing the importance in the lives most of us lead. He is enthusiastic about the people he meets, the experiences he has. For the most part he keeps an even keel in his narrative, though one wonders how many "friends" a person can have. All in all, a well-written travel book.
Jan 24, 2008 Andrew rated it really liked it
Charles Kuralt of CBS' old On the Road segments ranges across the United States one last time, spending a month at his twelve favorite sites and detailing all in a relishing of Americana. The beauty of what he finds comes not only in what he looks for but in the careful, down-to-earth way he captures it.
Mar 21, 2011 Paul rated it it was amazing
A standard by one of the most colorful painters of TV feature news reporting. Over his career Kuralt won 3 Peabody Awards and 10 Emmy Awards for Journalism, pick up a copy of "America" or "On The Road" and you'll understand why.

To get a more intimate or insightful look at Americana, during the last quarter of the 20th century, you'd have to rent an RV then find a time machine and hit the road yourself.
Jan 15, 2013 Kate rated it really liked it
Upon retirement from CBS, Kuralt travels to some of his favorite spots for a year and does a wonderful job introducing the reader to interesting stewards of this land, great sights and a downright good read, esp since I have been to a number of the locations and felt as if I was revisting with Kuralt. If I hadn't been there
, he either piqued my interest to go or made me feel as if I was there with him.
Aug 27, 2007 Dave rated it liked it
Kuralt is a good storyteller. My only disappointment in this book is that Charles fit 12 different stories from 12 different places in only 300 pages. I believe I would have enjoyed it much more if he had done the same twelve stories in two books that allowed him to flesh out the stories a bit more. He spent some time in the south in this book, and I know that there must have been more anecdotes that he had to leave out because of limited space.
Jul 25, 2015 Jackie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading this lovely book for the second time was as wonderful as the first time. He was a truly gifted writer and made you truly feel you were seeing what he was seeing. Knowing how little time he had left when he finished this book made me very sad. He was so looking forward to visiting his favorite places many more times and that didn't happen.
Jan 01, 2015 Cindy rated it it was amazing
Oh, how I love Charles Kuralt. And I don't care that his personal life was duplicitous (I looked it up on the internet), he's such a wonderful writer and traveler. Here he spends a month in 12 different locations in America, from Alaska to Maine and all in between, talking with people...his specialty...and seeing the sights usually off the beaten path. Makes me want to get on a train.
Paul Andrews
Nov 27, 2016 Paul Andrews rated it it was amazing
Whenever the world goes crazy, which seems to be often these days, I pull Charles Kuralt off the shelf and re-read this delightful year in his life. I only we were all so lucky as to have a bucket list retirement year like this. Read it and you will relax and learn a lot about 12 places in the US you will want to visit.
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Charles Kuralt was an award-winning American journalist. He was most widely known for his long career with CBS, first for his "On the Road" segments on The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite, and later as the first anchor of CBS News Sunday Morning, a position he held for fifteen years.

Kuralt's "On the Road" segments were recognized twice with personal Peabody Awards. The first, awarded in 1968
More about Charles Kuralt...

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