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Lois on the Loose: One Woman, One Motorcycle, 20,000 Miles Across the Americas

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  681 ratings  ·  96 reviews
Lois Pryce was working at the BBC in London, firmly set on the career track. But unbeknownst to her coworkers, Lois was leading a parallel life as well, that of a biker babe with an overwhelming case of wanderlust, one that couldn't be satisfied by a weekend holiday. Her days in a cubicle were numbered, and it wasn't long before she was back on her bike and looking for ...more
Hardcover, 294 pages
Published March 20th 2007 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published March 1st 2007)
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Average rating 4.09  · 
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 ·  681 ratings  ·  96 reviews


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Paul
Oct 28, 2014 rated it liked it
Lois Pryce is a bit of a motorcycle nut. Stuck in a bit of a dead end job at the BBC she dreams of climbing on her bike and riding off into the sunset. But where to go? A chat with a friend called Austin, and the beginnings of a plan are hatched; he advises having a solid route to follow, so after some deliberation she decides on the not insignificant route of Anchorage in Alaska all the way down the Pan American Highway to Ushuaia in Argentina.

A 250cc Yamaha bike is acquired and she starts the
...more
Kay
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Rollicking writing as a young woman goes all out to bring her passion alive--on a dirt bike from Anchorage to Tierra del Fuego. "A road trip isn't about being somewhere, I reminded myself, it's about going somewhere, and ultimately, that was all I wanted to do," says Lois. Very tough moments included, but also fresh fun, which she finds in the unlikeliest places. A philosopher at times, she says, "... it occurred to me that my anxiousness was just a natural, if unwanted, by-product of ...more
Diane in Australia
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Diane in Australia by: Paul
Lois rides a 250cc dirt bike from Alaska to Argentina ... 20,000 miles. I've read a lot of the 'woman alone' journeys, and this one just didn't grab me. I would have preferred to hear more about the countries, and the people ... and not so much about bike repairs, etc. She does hook up with a couple of female companions for awhile, so, the entire trip wasn't strictly a 'woman alone' trip.

But it's a quick, easy read, so, if you can read it for free, go for it.

2 Stars = Blah. It didn't do anything
...more
Mike Robbins
Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I gave up riding a motorbike after an accident in London in 1980, but can still see the attraction. I still like to sit on the pillion and some years ago rode across Bhutan with a friend on his little trail bike; I am still not sure how we got over 12,000ft passes on that thing, often with hangovers (we called on many friends along the way). But we only dropped the bike once, on a dirt road at twilight, when my friend took a tight hairpin bend too slowly after 12 hours on the road. We were sent ...more
Gumble's Yard
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2007
Extremely derivative travel book as the author describes (in the style of The Office/Dilbert) giving up her job at the BBC and then (in the style of Bill Bryson/an alternative stand-up) her travels from Alaska to Argentina along the length of the American continent by motorbike.

The book is easy and pleasant to read but:

Her descriptions are often ridiculously clichéd or naive (an angry American finishing by saying have a nice day, the apparent incongruity of preparing for Christmas in the
...more
Travis Duke
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A super fun ride with Lois as she travels from Alaska all the way down to the tip of South America via motorcycle. The story follows a British woman's journey some 20,000 miles on somewhat small dirt bike, gutsy is an understatement. Lois is fed up with her job and being a motorcycle junkie decides to embark on an epic journey. The writing is free spirited and easy going with a good helping of humor. I was really surprised at how well put together the story is, only because some of these ...more
Maria Mcmanus
Apr 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book was very inspiring and insightful. The cover makes it look a little more lightweight than it really is. It's just the tale of how this english woman (Lois) picks up and gets on a bike and goes from Alaska to the southern tip of south america ... but it really made me think about my own relationship to courage and adventure. There was a character in the book that wasn't all that likeable ... and, unfortuately, I saw myself in her complaining ways. I was inspired to try to be more like ...more
Clare
May 01, 2010 rated it it was ok
Lois Price writes in what I consider a very British voice, not quite the sly British humor I love, but the understated yet complicated language that people mock today.

Despite this sudden influx of ursine furry friends I was still keen to carry on camping, although the reality of having one set of clothes and no washing facilities was beginning to make itself known to me, and probably anyone else who had the misfortune to come into contact with me.

Lois on the Loose tracks one womans motorcycle
...more
Sandra
Jan 18, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: adventure seekers
Shelves: memoirs
I'm not sure what my initial draw to this book was, but I really enjoyed it nonetheless. I'm not into motorcycles at all, and I really have no desire to travel the americas on one, but it was still a good read.

Lois, from London, set off on a globe trekking mission of riding her bike from Anchorage, Alaska to the southern tip of South America. She traveled down through California, into Mexico, through Central America and on down to South America.

I was impressed with her ability to forage her own
...more
Alice
May 29, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: travel, motorcycles
I love motorcycle travelogues, and after hearing Lois speak at a meeting of the Kent Advanced Motorcycling Group I had to buy a copy of her book (and get it signed, naturally).

At 29, Lois quit her desk job with the BBC in order to travel the Pan American Highway from the north of Alaska to the tip of South America. Travelling solo for the most part, she meets natural obstacles such as snow, wind and rockfalls as well as human obstructions in the form of border guards and police officers. On the
...more
Bern J
May 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Lois is the guttiest gal I've ever read about.Riding a small (225cc trail bike) motorcycle from the Arctic Circle to Patagonia, at the tip of South America SOLO would be an epic trip for Captain America or Iron Man. For a young woman riding alone, unbelievable.
One of my favorite passages is when she's in Panama on her way south into Columbia.
She writes "How bad could it be? I reasoned to myself.After all, if I'd listened to every warning, I'd never have left home.Remember the doom merchants are
...more
Rich
Mar 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I've read and enjoyed many memoirs (I like the form). I've read and enjoyed motorcycle books (ditto). No offense to Ted Simon and his groundbreaking and beautiful book, "Jupiter's Travels" -- which laid the foundation for this work -- but I enjoyed this book more. Ms. Price is both smart and foolish, honest and flawed, and an incredibly strong person. I like people like her, and I truly savored this book. Puts the lie to the "bigger is better" brand of motorcycling. Slow down, enjoy the ride -- ...more
Stephanie
Jul 29, 2007 rated it it was ok
It was okay. It wasn't the greatest bit of escapist travel writing. Clearly, she couldn't relate everything from her travels, but I felt that she skipped over things that would have been interesting. She writes honestly, though not really self-reflexively. I was content that at least she criticized Westerners traveling through Central and South America as much as she did the locals she encountered. I think it would have been more interesting to keep up with the blog/website that she did while on ...more
Andy
Jan 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
Not bad. Lois Price is obviously not a writer by profession. But she has fun traveling, and has an adventurous spirit.

I like travel books, but find that often the best travelers are not great writers, and vis-versa. There are a few exceptions of course. Sometimes it's fun to read someone that just likes traveling, but is not much of a writer. Sometimes it's fun to read a very talented writer, even if they are not the most adventurous traveler.

In terms of motorcycle travel books, I enjoyed "long
...more
John
Aug 31, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: motorcyclists especially
Shelves: travel, library_books
The journey itself was more exciting in some places than others, but the author is a great writer. Looking forward to her next adventure.
Jane Blanchard
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved the memoir, Lois on the Loose by Lois Pryce. She recalls her adventure of traveling solo 20,000 miles across the Americas on her motorcycle with humor and honesty.

Bored with her life in London, Lois ships her 250cc bike to Alaska and rides to the most southern point in South America. Along the way, she rides through a variety of terrains, challenging weather conditions, and in cultures different from her own. Driven by a sense of adventure, she faces challenges with strength and a great
...more
Cathygillespie
Nov 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic trip, gutsy woman and well written adventure and since she has the same bike as me Im full of admiration for a trip that took a lot of courage. I have met Lois Pryce as she has given several talks on her trips to motorcycle groups and she is just as impressive in person as in print. Great winter read when the weather is chilly, the heating is on and the armchair beckons. Very enjoyable. ...more
Dave
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An entertaining adventure travel tale, as told from the author's unique perspective. Is it a perfect travel guide for motorcycle adventurers? No. But that isn't really the point. It is an inspirational story full of funny anecdotes and personal experiences/opinions. As a native Californian, I found her descriptions of NorCal/SoCal amusingly accurate.
Overall, a great read for anyone interested in adventure travel and motorcycles.
Sarah
Jan 09, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shes adventurous and hilarious, but has a slightly pessimistic attitude about people. Maybe this is why she is so funny but I did find it a little tiring reading exaggerated opinions about ever person she came in contact with. Decent little adventure read but not sure if Ill read anymore of her books. ...more
Ben Cook
Dec 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: travel
Easy read with good humor along the way and an awesome attitude towards the complications of a long trip like she took. Once past Santiago, Chili the story speeds along with not much detail on the southern extremes. Highly enjoyable read.
Rosie
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A great and enjoyable trip across North and South America. A trip I absolutely want to do myself. A very fun look at some different parts of the world, especially the interesting difference in views from across the borders.
Nigel Grace
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A perfect read for the motorcycle traveller.
See also he other two books....
Francie
Sep 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fast read about a girl and her motorcycle. Yet another reminder that its often about the journey, not always about the destination!
Kay
Jun 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
a little slow with the details but overall a good read.
Jeff Sibley
Jan 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed Lois's voice during her motorcycle journey down the backbone of the Americas. Quite an adventure and even told from a woman's prospective, I really enjoyed it, maybe even more since it added an additional element to the adventure.
At the end of the day I would recommend this a fun read for those interested in travel adventure stories.
Zettie Jones
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is a hoot ! Lois takes you on her free wheeling adventure that's full of it's ups & downs. I loved her honest & often hilarious opinions on every aspect of her cross continent travel.
J.T.
Jul 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Lois Pryce, at age 28, stuck at a dead-end job at the BBC (although producing collections of Delia Derbyshire and her compatriots doesnt sound half-bad), starts dreaming of a motorcycle adventure from Alaska down to Tierra del Fuegos Ushuaia.

Sounds intimidating for someone who doesnt speak Spanish or who has never made any long trips anywhere on a motorcycle? Or maybe not.

She quits her job, sells her classic British road bike and gets a decade-old Yamaha trail bike. Not long after, she ships
...more
Graham
Aug 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: happy-reads
I read this during a time in my life when I was contemplating the merits of dropping everything and exploring the world on my bike. This book both fueled that dream and helped me realize that I'm just not there yet. I whole heartedly recommend the read to anyone that has dream't the same way, or just loves their bike, or even someone that hates bikes but imagines themselves on an adventure. Some of the writing irritated me at times and I can't rate it independently as a great read. I would rate ...more
Linda
I read this book as part of a 2015 book challenge which stipulated to read a book with a sport theme. Its a memoir of a one womans motorbike odyssey through 20,000 miles of the Americas from Alaska to Argentina. Im not a sports fan so this was a painless way to meet this aspect of the challenge as I did quite enjoy the travel writing aspect of the book. Lois travelled on a trail bike and did most of the maintenance and repairs herself as well as camping out in some quite inhospitable territories ...more
Katrina
Jun 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's a super-fun motorcycle-adventure canon, and Lois' epic tour fits right in. Why doesn't she appear on this list? http://www.advrider.com/Books/Books.html

The writing is decent. The narrative tempo is particularly great. Sometimes she comes across as too eager to be the hero of her own story. Sometimes her very British, biting humor comes across as rude.

But the overall tone is genuine and joyful. Good touring-prep reading, less for practical tips than for the spirit: Lois evokes the
...more
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