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States of Mind

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  57 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Can you find love in Love, Virginia? Is there inspiration in Inspiration, Arizona? Brad Herzog took stock of his Generation X lifestyle and didn't like what he discovered. So he and his wife emptied their bank accounts, packed everything into a Winnebago, and set a course for a fabled America they weren't sure existed.
What began as a literal search for the small places o
Paperback, 416 pages
Published May 1st 2001 by Gallery Books (first published June 1st 1999)
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Foreigner in My Own Backyard by Travis CaseyThe World At Large by Adam E. MehaffeyOnce Upon a Road Trip by Angela N. BlountPromise of Departure by L.W. MontgomeryUnsavory Elements by Tom  Carter
Best Adventure Travel Memoir
23rd out of 142 books — 104 voters
Blood River by Tim ButcherMemoirs of a Geisha by Arthur GoldenThe World At Large by Adam E. MehaffeyA Walk in the Woods by Bill BrysonChasing the Devil by Tim Butcher
Best Memoirs/Autobiography/Travel
225th out of 450 books — 552 voters

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Wisdom, Faith, Freedom, Harmony, Love, Justice, Glory, Friendship: a list of some of the towns the author and his wife visited on a quest to find America. It was a quest to dispel cynicism and find some beauty on the people of America, and he did in great little vignettes of these towns. He didn’t always find the embodiment of the word in the town: there is no justice or triumph in Justice, WV, or Triumph, LA. But he found Americans who in their plainness, simplicity, lives, and loves inspire us ...more
Interesting journey through small-town America to discover what makes people sustain and persevere. Got a little dry at times, as the journey was also one of self-awareness and philosophical delving. Sounded like a fun thing to do for a year, though.
Julia DelSignore Peoples
Some parts of this book were tedious for me. I found myself saying, "I really don't care." But, there were some parts that I found very interesting.
I enjoyed this read so much that I am going to immediately continue the journey with Small World: A Microcosmic Journey.

I read When You Are Engulfed in Flames this week too. The juxtaposition of the two books has had my head spinning for the past few days.

Two authors, two ways of encountering the world and the people in it. Brad Herzog's reader enjoys predictable wave after wave of polite encounters that start with well mannered introductions and result in a story shared or a lesson learned. Da
Aaron Ritchey
Funny about this book, it's the kind of book that you would think about writing, but never actually write. I can see the conversation...hey, I'll write a book about places in America with inspiration or odd names, all the while travelling across the U.S. Herzog took the "what if" and made it into a reality. And what a wonderful thing his book turned out to be. It's clever, interesting, well-written, and insightful. I did want more of a closure at the end, a kind of flourish in the finish, but ma ...more
Back in 2000 I owned a Chevy Blazer, a crazy boxer pup and dated a woman who ran off to South Dakota. I turned to this book that Christmas with dreams of driving cross country with many passages highlighted. Its been a long time since the read, the Blazer is long broken down, the dog rests by my feet and I married the girl. But, I still dream of hopping into a Winnebago and I'm content knowing that there are 85 people in Love (Virginia).
I first saw this author on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire", and was hooked when he described his first book.

I love travel books with a structure, and this delivers in spades. The author and his wife travel around the country in search of the meaning of towns with names like "Bliss" and "Comfort". How did they get their names? Do they live up to them?

Read and find out.
I finished this while on vacation. I drove by Troy ... but not the Troy that Herzog visited. Besides, that was his last book. They're sort of melting together for me. Ah well. I love his writing.

I wrote about it here:
Read this for book club many years ago when it was hyped up on Oprah...don't let that fool you, it was a great read. Thought of this book when I was looking at a review of the book Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner.
Probably a 3.5. I really liked the stories here, especially the history portions.
Katya Cengel
A great journey in words and wonder.
Carrie Pirmann
books I've read,travel narratives
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Brad Herzog is the author of more than three-dozen books for readers of all ages. His children's books include the beautifully-illustrated picture book FRANCIS AND EDDIE (Why Not Books, 2013) and the five-book COUNT ON ME: SPORTS series (Free Spirit Publishing, 2014). His many alphabet picture books for Sleeping Bear Press include H IS FOR HOME RUN and S IS FOR SAVE THE PLANET, which was a finalis ...more
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Turn Left At The Trojan Horse: A Would-Be Hero's American Odyssey T Is for Touchdown: A Football Alphabet H Is for Home Run: A Baseball G Is for Gold Medal: An Olympics Alphabet (Sleeping Bear Press Sports & Hobbies (Hardcover)) Small World: A Microcosmic Journey

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“These people were smiling because they were where they wanted to be. They understood that life is too short for what-ifs and complications. Life, they found, can be as simple as reading the wind.” 3 likes
“It could be that the hope was in the adventure, the honor in the pursuit, the pride in the doing.” 1 likes
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