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Best Camino Books (nonguide books, in English)

Discussion in 'Pilgrim Books' started by Rambler, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. Rambler

    Rambler Active Member Donating Member

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    I have read over 13 personal accounts and spiritual books now on the Camino. I want to continue on but want to be a little more selective on what I choose to read. So I wanted to get everyone's top five books that they have read and then I will post a poll to let everyone vote on which ones are the most popular. these are the ones I have read so far:
    -Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino
    -Roads to Santiago
    -My Father, My Daughter: Pilgrims on the Road to Santiago
    -Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago
    -The Journey: A Guide For The Modern Pilgrim
    -Pilgrim Stories: On and Off the Road to Santiago, Journeys Along an Ancient Way in Modern Spain
    -El Camino: Walking to Santiago De Compostela
    -The Pilgrimage to Santiago (Lost and Found Series)
    -The Pilgrim's Guide to Santiago De Compostela
    -The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago: The Complete Cultural Handbook
    -El Camino De Santiago: Rites of Passage

    What others are on your top five list?

    Rambler
     
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  2. Red Kite

    Red Kite Member

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    Nice one Rambler, I like this game. Here's my top five.

    1 Tim Moore's 'Spanish Steps: Travels with my donkey'. (Simply the best book about the camino...very, very funny, warm and compelling)

    2 'The Cockleshell Pilgrim' (an excellent little book about a medieval pilgrimage)

    3 'Pilgrimage to Heresy' (the best novel about the camino??)

    4 'Following the Milky Way; A Pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago' (what it was like to walk the camino in the 1980s)

    5 'Foot by Foot to Santiago de Compostella' (the first book I read about the camino).
     
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  3. William Marques

    William Marques Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    STARKIE, Walter. The road to Santiago: pilgrims of St James. - London: John Murray, 1957. [reissued by John Murray, 2003] - 324 pp.

    By some distance my favourite.
     
  4. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

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    Once again I will start by saying, Viva la Difference!! :wink:

    My worst camino book? Spanish Steps by Tim Moore. :evil:
    Why? He was cruel about the folk who tried to help him at the CSJ in London, called his fellow plilgrims unkind names, couldn’t write one page without being crude or profane (and I don’t think I’m a prude), and – in the words of a Travel Writers’ Forum, “…. uses his travels as a prop to hang his many jokes onto rather than to inform or enlighten his readers.”
    For me, his over-adjectivorial hyperbole humour became so tedious and tiresome that I felt like screaming at him to just get on with describing a scene, person or place as it was instead of constantly comparing it with something else.
    (I much preferred the honesty of Jack Hitt's writing - and he also had to struggle with a donkey!)

    A couple of books not mentioned here that I have on my bookshelf:
    Spanish Pilgrimage - A Canter to St James - Robin Hanbury-Tenison (He, his wife and 4 year old son travelled the route on horses in 1991) and.
    Pilgrim Stories - Nancy Louise Frey (Anthropologist's thesis on pilgrims)
    Pilgrim Snail by Ben Nimmo (Canterbury - Santiago with his trombone!)
     
  5. Bridget and Peter

    Bridget and Peter Active Member

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    I must confess to enjoying Tim Moore's book. So much so that I got another of his (his Tour de France cycle ride) out of the library. Recently I picked up another ( his version of the Grand Tour) second hand - but midway through that one I have got fed up with the style, and haven't finished it.

    However, if we are nominating the worst book - surely Shirley MacLaine wins hands down!!!

    Can I recommend Jonathan Sumption's Pilgrimage for Very Good Book - not simply the Camino de Sant Iago, but a very readable history of pilgrimage generally. Had me gripped!
     
  6. Red Kite

    Red Kite Member

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    I thought it was supposed to be about the best books too. :? Hey ho.

    For my money, the worst book about the camino has to be The Pilgrimage by Paolo Coelho. Turgid, pretentious and humourless. Dull, dull, dull. And did I mention pretentious??
     
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  7. Dale

    Dale Active Member

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    I agree and lets not forget dear old Paolo didn't even walk the Camino !!! :evil:
     
  8. JohnnieWalker

    JohnnieWalker Nunca se camina solo Donating Member

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    susanawee likes this.
  9. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

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  10. Dale

    Dale Active Member

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    Sorry it was a typo I did mead Dear.
     
  11. Rambler

    Rambler Active Member Donating Member

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    OK, here is the list of books I will put on the poll:
     Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino – Joyce Rupp http://www.amazon.com/dp/1570756163/?tag=ivarrekve
     Roads to Santiago – Cees Nooteboom
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0156011581/?tag=ivarrekve
     Camino Chronicle: Walking to Santiago – Susan Alcorn
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0936034033/?tag=ivarrekve
     Pilgrim Stories: On and Off the Road to Santiago, Journeys Along an Ancient Way in Modern Spain - Nancy Louise Frey (Anthropologist's thesis on pilgrims) http://www.amazon.com/dp/0520217519/?tag=ivarrekve
     El Camino: Walking to Santiago De Compostela -Lee Hoinacki http://www.amazon.com/dp/0271016124/?tag=ivarrekve
     The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago: The Complete Cultural Handbook - David M. Gitlitz & Linda Kay Davidson
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0312254164/?tag=ivarrekve
     El Camino De Santiago: Rites of Passage – Wayne Chimenti
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/1412056381/?tag=ivarrekve
     Spanish Steps: Travels with My Donkey: One Man and His Ass on a Pilgrimage to Santiago - Tim Moore
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0312320825/?tag=ivarrekve
     The Cockleshell Pilgrim – Katherine Lack
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0281055904/?tag=ivarrekve
     Pilgrimage to Heresy – Tracy Saunders
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0595469124/?tag=ivarrekve
     Following the Milky Way; A Pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago – Elyn Aviva http://www.amazon.com/dp/0971060908/?tag=ivarrekve
     Foot by Foot to Santiago de Compostella – Judy Foot
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000J3R83K/?tag=ivarrekve
     Spanish Pilgrimage - A Canter to St James - Robin Hanbury-Tenison (He, his wife and 4 year old son travelled the route on horses in 1991) http://www.amazon.com/dp/0099847302/?tag=ivarrekve
     Pilgrim Snail by Ben Nimmo (Canterbury - Santiago with his trombone!) http://www.amazon.com/dp/0007104731/?tag=ivarrekve
     Pilgrimage - Jonathan Sumption
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/057121293X/?tag=ivarrekve

    I am not including these since I have to limit the poll to 15 books.
     Buen Camino Hiking the Camino de Santiago - Jim & Eleanor Clem (no one suggested it)
     The Pilgrim's Guide to Santiago De Compostela – William Melczer (more of a translation of the ancient text)
     The Journey: A Guide For The Modern Pilgrim - Maria Ruiz Scaperlanda (Not just about the Camino)
     The Road to Santiago: pilgrims of St James. Walter Starkie. - London: John Murray, 1957. [reissued by John Murray, 2003] (No longer in print)
     The Pilgrimage to Santiago (Lost and Found Series) – Edwin Mullins (was not on my 10 ten, and no one suggested it)
     My Father, My Daughter: Pilgrims on the Road to Santiago – Maria and Donald Schell (had to shrink the list)
     The Camino : A Journey of the Spirit – Shirley MacLaine (would have loved to see if this was anyone's favorite, but could not afford the space, with only 15 allowed)
     The Pilgrimage – Paulo Coehlo (ditto)
    I will post the poll tomorrow asking everyone to select their top three. I will run it for thirty days to give everyone time.

    Let me know if you have suggestions.
    Rambler
     
  12. Trudy

    Trudy Active Member

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    My favourite five books at the moment, not necessarily in order of merit, are:

    "Walking the Camino: A modern pilgrimage to Santiago", by Tony Kevin (Australian pilgrim)

    "Spanish Steps: One Man and his Ass on the Pilgrim Way to Santiago", Tim Moore

    Virgin Trails: A Secular Pilgrimage", Robert Ward (covers Marion shrines as well as the Camino Frances)

    "The Cockleshell Pilgrim: A Medieval Journey to Compostela", Katherine Lack

    "What the Psychic told the Pilgrim: A midlife misadventure on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela", Jane Christmas.

    Each pilgrim experiences the Camino differently, and this is expressed in the writing of these books. Some books are very informative and contain good historical references, and a couple are more lighthearted but make me smile and that's important too.
     
  13. jl

    jl Veteran Member

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    Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
    I feel a bit bemused as (apart from Pilgrim Snail) the three books that I have particulalry enjoyed are not in anyones list.

    On Foot to the End of the World by Rene Freund - quite old now and originally published in German but particularly well translated (armchair Traveller) - one of the very few books that covers the Camino from Le Puy to SDC.
    The Year we Seized the Day by 2 Australian authors who aren't beyond using some colourful coloquial language - a very well written book none the less. My copy is out on loan at present and so am unable to give you their names.
    To the Field of Stars (A Pilgrim's journey to Santiago de Compostela) by Kevin A Codd. This book, written by an American Priest living in Belgium, is a joy to read and comes with a warning in the introduction - and here I qote:-

    "May I advise you exercise a modicum of caution in attending to what follows, for the story of stars dancing over a field in a faraway land may so draw you away from the ordinary business of daily life that you find yourself, quite to your surprise, in a world of unexpected adventures and remarkable people and some profound mysteries. If this should happen to you, if the story of stars............... And if you leave home to see these stars cavort for yourself it will surely change you. You will come to see that which was previously unseen. You will witness miracles. You will, in the end, find yourself coming to know what is most true about these brief lives we have been given to live out on this tender earth. ..............
    ...........for the journey to the Field of Stars, to Santiago de Compostela, is a journey that has the power to chane lives forever." (and can't we all relate to that last sentence!)

    This was a thoughful and though provoking book that I found difficult to put down, and I am surprised that it has not appeared on anyones list. I hope the above quote piques an interest! Cheers, Janet
     
  14. William Marques

    William Marques Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    Just because a book is out of print does not stop it from being the best book ever written about the Camino. A poll without Starkie would be like one on theatre without Shakespeare or music without Mozart.
     
  15. Bridget and Peter

    Bridget and Peter Active Member

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    Camino Ingles 2009
    Limoges to Gernica 2009
    Gernica to San Vicente de la Barquera 2010
    San Vicente to La Isla 2012
    La Isla to Santiago Sept/Oct 2014
    I discovered this gentleman's blog before we journeyed this year in the Belgium to Vezelay direction, as he did the same, so I have been wondering about looking for (via the library?) his book. I find the quote you give, Janet, rather too flowery for my taste - presumably this tones down as the book goes on? His blog didn't strike me in that way.


    Rambler - do you need to wait a bit longer before selecting your short list? There seem to be people still making suggestions. Maybe it should be like the Booker prize - have a long list which we discuss for a while before coming up with a short list to vote on?

    This has already prompted me to try a few books I haven't read yet.
     
  16. KiwiNomad06

    KiwiNomad06 Veteran Member

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    I have just obtained the book by Kevin Codd that Janet mentioned, and already just dipping in, I am enthralled. I am looking forward to reading and pondering it over the coming weeks. Thanks Janet for mentioning it on Jane's blog.
    Margaret
     
  17. jl

    jl Veteran Member

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    Frances('05, '07), Aragonese ('05), del Norte / Primitivo ('09), Via Tolosana (Toulouse '05), Via Podiensis (Le Puy '07), Via Lemovicensis (Troyes '09), VF ('12), Winter Camino ('13/'14) Cammino d'Assisi ('14) Jakobseweg (Leipzig - Paris '15) San Salvador/Norte ('15) Ignaciano ('16) Invierno ('16)
    I forgot to mention earlier, when on line, my most favourite book of all - now unfortunately only available from second hand book sellers - at great expense. This book is by Nicholas Luard and is called The Field of the Star: Pilgrim's Journey to Santiago De Compostela. This is another of the too few books about the french paths that go right through to Compostela.

    Luard does his pilgrimage in memory / celebration of his dying daughters life, doing it in stages from Le Puy. He battled very inclement weather on a number of occasions and doing the walk over 10 years ago he had much less facilities than is available today. Spain has a special place in Luard's life as he lived there for some time with his family (including with his talented atist daughter). The raw anguish that is evident in this man's journey makes for very moving reading and his skill with words also makes this very readable. Not only was his daughter quite remarkable but the glimpses one gets of this man's life is also very fascinating (from his alcoholism to being initiated as a member of the desert people of the kalahari desert to an MP).

    I would recoomend this book to anyone considering the French paths (if you can get hold of it). A fascinating journey indeed. Cheers, Janet
     
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  18. Rambler

    Rambler Active Member Donating Member

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    Not so Easy...

    Hmm...

    I guess this will not be as easy as I thought it would be. :?

    Trust me, I did want to take any books off the list. I was trying to work within the contraints of our technology and come up with the same effect.

    We just added six books that obviously should also be on there.

    What if everyone continues to post titles of books they consider as their top five over the next week or so. Then I will post multiple polls of 15 books, let people vote, and then post a summary poll of the highest ranked books from the various polls into one summary? This way we can make a list of 100 books if we want.

    But here are the rules:
    1. The book must primarily be about one of the multiple routes of the Camino or include it as a significant portion (this can include books on pilgrimages where the Camino is a portion)
    2. The book has to have been published in English
    3. It is a book that either played a significant part in your choice to walk the Camino, or you feel it one of the top books you have read about the Camino.

    Agreed?

    So post away. I have 39 books on the list as of now.

    Rambler
    :D This is fun!
     
  19. Priscillian

    Priscillian Veteran Member

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    My favourite, by far, still, (since I can hardly vote on my own...but thank you so much RedKite and Rambler for including it!) is Jack Hitt´s Off the Road. It is perhaps the most "honest" of the books on the Camino and was written at a time when there were fewer pilgrims, more space. I also very much enjoyed Robert Hodem´s Reflections on Spain´s St. James and His Way, and also Edwin Mullins´The Pilgrimage to Santiago.
    I will save space on Shirley McLaine (I met her "researcher...and anyway, who walks all those kms and doesn´t have time to pick up her Compostela?). Paolo Coelho´s The Pilgrimage I found too masculine for my taste, but it has brought a lots of Brazilians to the Camino, and they give the experience a little spice!
    Tracy Saunders
     
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  20. vjpulver

    vjpulver Crazy Chicken Lady with the Camino on my Mind!

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    Apr-Jun 2009 - I solo walked from Roncesvalles to Santiago. I hope to return as a hospitalera in 2016.
    I am an avid reader and read rather indiscriminately - while I value my time, I have learned that my initial response or thoughts on a book (or a person or an idea, etc) may be off base. Consequently I read, absorb, consider and move on. I frequently find that books I read come back to me years later, with lessons I did initially percieve. For some reason, we are not always ready to grasp what appears simplistic or vague..on ocassion such books become more profound as we grow and learn.

    I have three authors to add to this list of Best Camino Books (nonguide books, in English) I will spare you my reviews. You may Google them and find some interesting reviews that will stimulate most readers. Here they are, in NO particular order:

    - Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino by Joyce Rupp
    This 60-something woman, an "undercover" nun, walks the Camino in 37 days along with her companion, an "undercover" priest. Each chapter is posited as a life lesson. It is not a spiritual guide in any sense of the world and details the challenges the Camino offers.

    - Following the Milky Way: A Pilgrimage on the Camino by Elyn Aviva
    This is a memoir of her first Camino walk (1982). She wrote her disertation in cultural anthropology about the pilgrimage and has since walked it several times. Other Camino books by her include a mystery novel: [i]Dead End on the Camino [/i]and another novel on the search for meaning: The Journey: A Novel of Pilgrimage and Spiritual Quest. [/b

    - Santiago: Saint of Two Worlds by Joan Myers
    I have not seen this book, but I am familiar with the author's amazing photograghic works. It should be quite inspiring...her photos from Antarctica are stellar.

    I hope you will find these recommendations useful, whether you have yet to make the journey or are reliving the experience through the printed word. Thanks to the rest of you for your recommendations.

    Life is good...

    "Ginn"
    In Sunny Santa Fe
    http://www.pulverpages.com
     
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  21. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

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    One of my most disappointing reads (and I didn't read past the introductory 15 pages) was William Bonville's A Traveler's Highway to Heaven: Exploring the History and Culture of Northern Spain.
    Grant Spangler first brought it to our attention when he wrote:

    However, there were so many inaccuracies in the book - some almost sacrilegious to pilgrims and authorities - relating to the camino that one would be skeptical of any other information in the book.

    If anyone who hasn't walked the camino has a copy, here are a few pearls:

    1)
    2)
    3)
    4)
     
  22. Esther Jantzen

    Esther Jantzen New Member

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    I don't know if this counts, Rambler, but I became enchanted by reading the lengthy "Santiago de Compostela" chapter in James Michener's lengthy Iberia: Spanish Travels and Reflections (1968). My gosh, he passionately loved that country.
     
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  23. crackmrmac

    crackmrmac Veteran Member

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    To the Field of Stars (A Pilgrim's journey to Santiago de Compostela)

    Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino

    The Way Is Made by Walking

    I enjoyed these books very much, but I can't fathom Shirley Mac Laine's book The Camino at all. OK I'm only on page 110 and I'm only approaching 50..............perhaps all will be revealed in later life. Or perhaps I only post this because tomorrow is Friday 13th!!!!!!!!!!

    Buen Camino

    Brian
     
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  24. Adobe

    Adobe New Member

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    I am now about half way through "WHAT THE PSYCHIC TOLD THE PILGRIM" by Jane Christmas.
    It's the story of a woman in her fifties and her inner view's and encounters along the route. Very well written, she has a witty and keen use of the english language, I an a man in his sixties and find myself laughing out loud. This book has been bought for a movie.
     
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  25. SisterPearl

    SisterPearl New Member

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    The first time I even heard of the Camino was in Rosemary Mahoney's book,The Singular Pilgrim.
    In the book, she writes of her experiences visiting holy sites and completing pilgrimages from around the world. Her chapter on the Camino was what inspired e to make my pilgrimage. The author herself is not religious, but very respectful of faith, and incredibly candid about her experiences. I have reread that chapter on the Camino so many times, and it remains my favorite 'til this day.

    A very close second is Walk in a Relaxed Manner. I read it both before making the pilgrimage, and then again now upon my return home, and it continues to guide me.
     
  26. karennz2012

    karennz2012 Member

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    have just skimmed this thread but cant see any mention of "The year we seized the day" - its by a couple of Australian authors - Elizabeth Best and Colin Bowles.
    Im just re-reading it - which is a good and a bad thing - as I wait for my Camino trip next year. The recounting of days not seeing anyone is a bit freaky but then I read about the crowds of Spanish boy scouts as the authors neared Santiago and thats a bit freaky too!
    but very readable and I found myself reading fast so I could find out what happened to them so...enjoy.
    karen
     
  27. sharon w

    sharon w Active Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances 2007
    Camino Portugues 2009
    Via Podiensis, Camino Frances, Camino Finisterre 2012
    Cammino di Assisi 2014
    Via Podiensis, Camino del Norte, Camino Frances(Astorga to Santiago) 2015
    Aussie Camino 2016
    Hi Karen. I love "The Year We seized the day". However, unlike Colin and Eli we always saw peregrinos along the route. You won't be lonely.
    Sharon
     
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  28. Alan Pearce

    Alan Pearce Active Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Cowra, N.S.W.
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009 , VdlP 2011 , Ingles May 2014 Camino de Madrid May/June 2015, Baamonde to Compostela June 2015
    I recently purchased a copy of "The Artists Journey", by an American writer/artist named Marcia Shaver. The story describes her 2008 camino, and is exquisitely illustrated by her pen and ink drawings. The story is similar to many, but leavened by her hearty sense of humour. The details of the book can be found on her website http://www.theartistsjourney.com

    Alan

    Be brave. Life is joyous.
     
  29. lettienets

    lettienets Member Donating Member

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    Other ones I have enjoyed are
    We are not alone, by Lesley D Harman
    Peregrina, a woman's journey in the camino by Marilyn Melville
    All the good pilgrims, by Robert Ward
    My Camino, by Sue Kenney
    Walking home on the camino de Santiago by Linda L Lasswell.
     
  30. falcon269

    falcon269 no commercial interests

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    yes
  31. falcon269

    falcon269 no commercial interests

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    yes
  32. cstclare

    cstclare Member

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    I have read many personal narratives over the years. Although I was --and am--a walking pilgrim, I have always loved Bettina Selby's book, "Pilgrim's Road." Another favorite is Kevin A Codd's "To the Field of Stars." I find myself referring to them again and again.
     
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  33. moonshadow

    moonshadow New Member

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    'My Camino a personal pilgrimage' by M G Moon
     
  34. manifestdestinyLISA

    manifestdestinyLISA Active Member

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    Ok so I went to the library 2 weeks ago to peruse the shelves in search of the John Brierly guide.
    No such luck here in Steubenville OH. I am missing my North NJ library (where I am originally from) I left with Foders Spain 2004 & France from 2007?! In addition, Rick Steves Backpacking Europe, and the 3 camino books ordered from another nearby library and one video Pilgrimages of Europe. I have no comment on best book..I am a novice all around and indulging my desire to imagine & learn ! But I am really enjoying book #3 of list below right now.

    1)The Pilgrimmage to THE END OF THE WORLD by Conrad Rudolph- its a nice, easy, breezy read of his camino with some nice history, packing suggestions, photo's and other reading suggestions.

    2) Camino Santiago Fingerprints of God by Paul Moylan- also an easy read of his 2 caminos with a very personal touch, with letters, pics, reflections on faith and differences/similarities of his caminos, links & suggestions- he signed this copy and think he may be a veteran poster/pilgrim on here?!

    3) Right now, I am reading and liking What the Psychic Told the Pilgrim by Jane Christmas- this lady tells it like is-and her writing voice is very funny and seems honest/observant. She adds some nice history into the mix. I am only 93 pages in but can't wait to continue. Laughing out loud and imagining the perdicaments with people etc..Reminds me that sense of humor is essential gear to pack for camino!"Bring it"!

    I am going to order J. Brierly and look into some of the other books posted!
     
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  35. jimtim

    jimtim New Member

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    Location:
    cambridge, massachusetts
    Camino(s) past & future:
    le puy en velay to finisterre, seville to finisterre, arles to santiago
    well... i must say i'm partial to the Camino de Santiago 'Trilogy plus One' i published last october. Sons of Thunder and Autumn on the Trail to Santiago, parts 1 & 2, celebrate one summer's 2000 mile trek in very different ways: Sons - from Sevilla on the Via de la Plata - is festive, yang, right-brained. and Autumn - from Arles - mellows with the season, is yin, meditative, left-brained. these two books come together to form a whole expression of what it's like to be away for 5 months following these ancient paths. part 3, Upon This Stoney Holy Year, deals with my eye-opening first pilgrimage from Le Puy en Vélay when it all was new. and part 4, Scales of the Dragon, collects the poetry from the first three in one volume.

    Please enjoy the photos on my website: http://www.jimtimberlake.com/
     
  36. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
    Wrong topic!
     
  37. Windswept.west

    Windswept.west New Member

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    Location:
    Odessa Texas, USA
    Just finished “The Best Way” by Bill Walker and it is all right. Bill walks the Camino with his nephew who just graduated high school in 2010, later alone in 2011. They are Protestants from America exploring some of the differences between Americans and Europeans, relaying history both ancient a modern of the Camino, Europe and Spain especially. He provides the highs and lows he and Gavin go though and at times very funny. He is very respectful to the people of Spain, pilgrims (with the exception of the snorers :shock: ) and religion. Bill also has books on his hikes of the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail.
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Best-Way-ebook/
     
  38. manifestdestinyLISA

    manifestdestinyLISA Active Member

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    Hiking the Camino 500 miles with Jesus

    Just finished reading Hiking the Camino 500 miles with Jesus by Fr. Dave Pivonka, T.O.R...
    I appreciated his honesty about the physical struggles and spiritual lessons learned along the WAY. He decided to do the pilgrimmage in 2006 to celebrate 10 years of priesthood. He traveled with a another priest and celebrated mass daily along the way. I really feel I got a sense of the spirit of the camino and day to day life of walking...walking..struggling, celebrating, sharing with others that may be similiar or different. I couldn't put the book down, I felt like I was walking with him and experiencing some of the sights, sounds and people with him. I really like his spiritual perspective mixed with earthy, pilgrim gratitude & acceptance...

    Fr. Dave is a priest at the University that I just graduated from..I have not met him and he is away for the summer or I would pick his brain! Im still hoping he may turn up before I leave.
     
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  39. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
    The last Camino book I read is "Walking the Way in and Age of Anxiety" by John Pratt, a retired College English teacher.
    I have reviewed the book on Amazon and tried to be fair to the writer as the book is certainly comprehensive, giving a blow by blow account of almost every step, weather, path, meal, albergue, bed, pilgrims met, blister, ache or pain, tummy aches, anxiety, insecurity ......
    If you are walking the Camino for the first time and want to know every little detail then this is the book for you.
    However, when you find two spelling mistakes in the Table of Contents you think, Oh no! Its not going to be one of those books riddled with errors, is it? From then on you can't help reading it like a proof reader. So many mistakes - names of places, spelling errors, incorrect terms (eg: Menu del Dei, San Juan de la Pena after Burgos) - that the little yellow papers sticking out the pages at the top look like a forest!
    I think I would be more forgiving if this wasn't written by a College lecturer with a Ph.D in English!
    But, as I said, if you can look past all of that, it isn't a bad book to read about walking the Camino Frances - its just that there are a lot better.
     
  40. DennisWalker

    DennisWalker New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    2012/2013
    I just read "buen caminoooo!". It's different from the previous that I've read, because it's funny too. It gives a great flavour of a wonderful adventure. :D
     
  41. Sam R Gibson

    Sam R Gibson New Member

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    I have read several but none more substantially worthwhile than Robert Mullen's Call of The Camino which interweaves his own personal journal with Camino legends and reflections on the significance of myth in human history. Mullen combines a healthy scepticism towards the excesses of religion with an extremely humane account of those he meets along The Way. This is not a guidebook to good refugios and such but rather an engagingly personal and accessible anthropological take on the wonders of the road to Santiago. If there are any recent Camino books one would wish to read a second or third time, here it is.

    Caminante , son tus huellas elcamino ,y nada mas ; caminante , no hay camino, se hace camino al andar. Antonio Machado.
     
  42. marinaursula

    marinaursula New Member

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    What about Cecilia Samartin's Senor Pergrino and La Peregrina. They are novels, but are true to the history and the Way today. Good reads, especially the Senor Peregrino one, but then reading the La Peregrina tells you the story behind the story, so it is good because of that fact...
    It might have been suggested before, but I have not read all posts on this topic/ But I do know it can be information overwhelm, with all the info books, so for me it was nice to read a story that integrated a lot of it in a different way. I read it again when I returned home, and it was even better then, ... Good read and of course, buen camino
     
  43. Priscillian

    Priscillian Veteran Member

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    Location:
    Carantona, Galicia
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances 1999, Aragones 2000, Desde Le Puy 2002, Portuguese 2009, hoping RDLP 2014
    If you would like to know more about the history of the Camino and the man who started it all rolling you might enjoy my own new novel St James' Rooster which is Book Two of The Camino Chronicles. Book One, Pilgrimage to Heresy, was voted onto the original list of "Best Books" above.
     
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  44. methodist.pilgrim.98

    methodist.pilgrim.98 R.I.P 2013

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    Location:
    North West England
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Francés (2004.SJPP-SdC-Finisterre)(1998-2012 completed in sections). Norte (2006.122km) Inglés (2009)
    OK, firstly 10 out of 10 for Tracey's own unashamed plugging of her book. :D

    In the past people have got on her back in other threads, I just hope her comment doesn't cause more negativity. Anyone who writes for a living has to be a self publicist and I love her chuzump (hope that the right word!)
     
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  45. szenat

    szenat New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    planing to walk the Camino
    I know that some of you may think "oh no, not that" but the first inspiration to do Camino for me was The Pilgrim by Paulo Cohelo. And currently as I'm getting ready to do my first camino John Brierley is very helpful.
     
  46. NoQ

    NoQ Active Member

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    Location:
    Hong Kong
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances Jul 2011 and Jul/Aug2013. Camino Ingles Apr2014

    What a great book! Just got this from CSJ and it is well worth a read.

    I opened it and read the first couple of lines and was hooked

    'Ever since word spread that St James's body had been discovered...the tomb had been a rallying point for...opposition to Islam'.

    And the Pilgrimage is gaining in momentum and popularity and relevance once again. Interesting.
     
  47. Guillemot

    Guillemot New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago (2011)
    For anyone wanting an alternative take on the usual Camino book, try this one:

    'El Caminante: On the road to Field-of-the-Stars'
    By Richard Kipling and Damon Hammond

    http://www.amazon.com/El-Caminante-Fiel ... B00CO9ZYY2

    This novel weaves an account of the real pilgrimage together with a fictional journey along the Camino, exploring the experience of the Way from two very different perspectives.

    The real journey is my own, taken in 2011; the fictional journey the creation of my co-author Damon Hammond - the book follows the two pilgrims along their roads across Spain, to a final meeting on the cliffs of Finisterre.
     
    hecate105 likes this.
  48. StuartM

    StuartM Active Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances (2012)
    I loved Clear Waters Rising by the explorer Nicholas Crane. He walked along the European watershed alone from Finisterra to Istanbul, following part of the Camino Frances backwards. It's a proper adventure as well as a real record of Europe in the middle of change (written as Eastern Europe was opening up and the Balkan Wars coming to an end). Crane is a marvellous writer, switching from English gentleman to oddball eccentric in the space of a couple of paragraphs. Reading 15 years after it was written it has a real sense of a world that didn't have much time left. And at 10,000 miles on foot it's a hell of an achievement as well despite staying very humble about it.
     
  49. fortview

    fortview Active Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Gloucestershire UK
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino frances Sept/oct 2012 , Salvador, Primitivo 2013
    Cotswold Way July 2014
    European Peace Walk August 2014 (John)
    Just reading, and enjoying, " Grandma's on the camino" by Mary O'Hara Wyman.
    Given to me by my dear and lovely friend, met on the camino last September.Thank you Theatregal. :)
     
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  50. BrianForbesColgate

    BrianForbesColgate Member

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    Location:
    Woodstock, Ontario, Canada
    1. Not a book, but an article by Jack Hitt, whose book inspired The Way:
    Hiking Through History, With Your Daughters, NY Times, Travel, 17 April 2013

    http://travel.nytimes.com/2013/04/2...-with-your-daughters.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    [​IMG]

    2. A book, but as much art as story, though both are excellent. Sillydoll recommended this one back in 2008. It is available through the Confraternity of Saint James, and elsewhere:
    A Painting Pilgrim: a journey to Santiago de Compostela, by Mark Hoare
    http://www.csj.org.uk/acatalog/The_...Accounts_including_Devotional_Material_4.html
    You can read extracts and see some of the images at the author's site, here:
    http://www.mudwall.co.uk/book.htm

    [​IMG]

    3. Hiking the Camino de Santiago: A Village to Village Guide by Anna Dintaman and David Landis, is a new guide which I enjoyed reading, and the authors have provided a number of resources on the web site associated with the book [e.g., GPS track files].
    http://www.hikingthecamino.com

    [​IMG]

    However, I'm taking John Brierley's guides with me. :arrow:
    http://www.caminoguides.com
     
  51. pilgrimanna

    pilgrimanna New Member

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    Hello pilgrims,

    My favorite Camino tale is the German comedian Hape Kierkelings story: "I´m off then" (Yes, it is translated to English). If you have ever wondered, why so many Germans walk the Camino, it is because of his book, which have sold millions of copies in Germany. Never haven walked a single step with a backpack, a couch potato in a midlife crisis, he suddenly finds himself walking the Camino. On the first day he sits on top of the Pyrenees in soaking rain with his 25 pound backpack, dying of thirst and covered with goats vomit. After that he takes caps and buses and hitchhikes most of his way out of the mountains. But he ends up walking most of the way, strictly avoiding the alberges, which he hates, and without luck trying to avoid a very persistent German couple. But of course he ends up loving it and making great Camino-friends and he also finds the answer of the question: "Is there a God?"
    He is SO funny. You will love it!
    I bought my copy on amazon.

    Buen Camino!

    Love Anna, Denmark
     
  52. mulemad

    mulemad New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances (1998) y Portugues(2000)
    For what it's worth my special Camino books are The Santiago Pilgrimage by Edwin Mullins and Spanish Pilgrimage by Robin Hanbury Tenison. It was in fact this book that inspired me to do the Camino on horseback in 1998 and his reference to Mullins put me on to that book. After completing the Pilgrimage I got hold of every pilgrim account I could get hold of, be it walking, cycling, on horseback or donkey-pulling. If I´d read Paulo Coelho first, I would probably not have done the Camino, he made it into such a cult thing. Luard's book about his daughter I found too 'self-centred' for want of a better description.( I find this 'father-and-daughter' thing has now become a bit of a bore, crops up everywhere: on the camino (see 2 posts back), and every other series on tv). Thank God the film 'The Way' used a son. Aimery Picaud's original description is a delight and accompanied me along with a Canter to St James on the trail. I wont even deign to read Shirly MacCleans book. There's an interesting account of the trail in the book 'Therapy' (can't remember the author's name offhand). As a portuguese speaker as well as english I've read a few interesting accounts by galician cyclists on the Portuguese route and a centuries old account by an italian priest. But I don't think they are in english. Still have to get hold of Starkey's account.There's another horseriding account by a brasilian (portuguese only) Gauchos on Horeseback to Santiago. A good account of how not to go about it.
     
  53. Irène Elisabet

    Irène Elisabet St Benedict Ora Pro Nobis!

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Minnesota, USA
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances (2014)
    Currently reading this one: YOUR CAMINO - a Lightfoot Guide to Practical Preparation for a Pilgrimage by Nilsen, Sylvia, Dedman, Greg, Brand and I must say I am quite underwhelmed by it. Many errors including multiple duplicated paragraphs, silly drawings...this book came highly recommended but I'm not impressed thus far.

    I cannot rave enough about THIS BOOK: Camino de Santiago: To Walk Far, Carry Less by Ashmore, Jean-Christie. This book has forever (I hope) changed the way I look at packing, not just in preparation for the Camino but everytime I travel now - its amazing. All useful information, its all good IMHO.

    This is the first book I read on the Camino: Seven Tips to Make the Most of the Camino de Santiago (Books) Cheri Powell, Dave Davis. I have mixed feelings about this book since I've done a great deal more studying since my first read of it. Not a guide to light packing thats for sure but lots of handy tips about getting to and from and giving a good idea of what day to day life is like on the Camino. I skipped all her spiritualism stuff too, just not for me but others may like it.
     
  54. sillydoll

    sillydoll Veteran Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
    I am so sorry that you are not impressed with my book :(
    Please can you mail me the errors and multiple duplicated paragraphs so that they can be corrected.
    The 'silly drawings' were suggested by the managing editor of Cicerone press to provide relief from the text.
    Sylvia Nilsen
     
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  55. KinkyOne

    KinkyOne Veteran Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Ljubljana, Slovenia
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances ('09, '11 - entire, '14, '16),
    Finisterre ('11, '16),
    Madrid ('14),
    Invierno ('14),
    Levante ('15+'??),
    Sanabres ('14, '15 - entire),
    Muxia ('15),
    Bayona ('16),
    Salvador ('16),
    Ingles ('16)...
    I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
    Confirmed by Acacio, the owner of Refugio Acacio y Orietta in Vilorija la Rioja. And don't forget that Paolo Coelho is "the godfather" of their Refugio ;)
     
  56. Saint Mike II

    Saint Mike II Vetran Member Donating Member

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    Location:
    Illawarra Region NSW Australia
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Mozarabe/Via de la Plata - May 2013; cycled from Pamplona to Santiago Sep 2015; now planning to walk from St Jean to Santiago - starting May 1, 2017
    In addition to the two other Australian origin books (The Year we Seized the Day; and Tony Kevin's record of the VLDP) I recommend "Sinning Across Spain" written by Ailsa Piper (Victory Books - MUP). Its a great read that details Ailsa's story of walking the VDLP from Ganada to Santiago. She asked all kinds of people to sponsor her journey and she would "walk off their sins". I loved The Year we Seized the Day - can't remember such a great laugh - although its now out of print it is available via number of e_Book systems.:D
     
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  57. wayfarer

    wayfarer Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    Location:
    Co. Clare. Ireland
    Camino(s) past & future:
    SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
    Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
    SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
    I have just finished Bill Bennetts new book on the Camino. Bill is one of our own on the forum and his book is based on the blog of his own Camino this year. The book is funny and thought provoking and I enjoyed it thoroughly. It is called The Way, my way and is available on Amazon and Smashwords.
     
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  58. JabbaPapa

    JabbaPapa "True Pilgrim"

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Logroño - Compostela 1993 ; Paris - Compostela 1994 ; Monaco - Rome 2000 ; Monaco - Lourdes - Compostela 2005 ; Lourdes - Compostela 2014 ; Cap d'Ail - Monaco - Beausoleil 2016 ; Fatima - Compostela - SJPP - Lourdes 2017
    I read it last week, and it's very funny, I just zoomed through it in practically one sitting.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FB313KC/?tag=ivarrekve
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2013
    JennyH94 likes this.
  59. suekenney

    suekenney A pilgrim in life.

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances solo (2001).
    Guided Groups Frances (2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and plans for 2014.)
    Portuguese (2004).
    English solo (2005).
    Frances el contrario (2010)
    The first and only book I read before walking the Camino the first time was Shirley Maclaine's
    The Camino and then The Way is Made by Walking, one of my all time favourites. Have read many others which have all been listed.
     
  60. backpack45scb

    backpack45scb Member

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    Location:
    California
    Camino(s) past & future:
    (2001) French route from Roncesvalles, (2004-2006) Le Puy, (2007) - Portugal, (2008-2010) Arles, (2011) Camino Mozárabe to Córdova, (2012-2013) Geneva to Le Puy. Pacific Crest Trail (2000-2010)
    Absolutely, this should count. Probably the first thing I ever read that gave me a clue that the Camino existed.
     
  61. backpack45scb

    backpack45scb Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    California
    Camino(s) past & future:
    (2001) French route from Roncesvalles, (2004-2006) Le Puy, (2007) - Portugal, (2008-2010) Arles, (2011) Camino Mozárabe to Córdova, (2012-2013) Geneva to Le Puy. Pacific Crest Trail (2000-2010)
    Also, straying outside of the rules a little, how about Louise Collis - Memoirs of a Medieval Woman, a woman who aspired to sainthood and made all three pilgrimages.
     
  62. Jlhill

    Jlhill New Member

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  63. AJ

    AJ Veteran Member

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    646
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Malaga(08)Leon(09,11)San Sebastian(09)Vezelay(10)Canterbury-Rome(11)Rome-SdC(12)Winchester-SdC(13)Piedmont,Frances,Portuguese(14)MaryMichael,Norte,Frances(15)Levante,Sanabres,Invierno(16)
    I didn't understand it either.
     
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  64. TheTinkerBell

    TheTinkerBell Active Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    SJPP to SdC (May/June 2013)
    I made a pact with myself starting out that I wouldn't buy/read any book while walking the Camino. But I had to hang around Sarria for a couple of days waiting for my walking partner to join me and I bought this book. Finished it by Palas de Rei. Hilarious read.
     
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  65. hecate105

    hecate105 Active Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Portuguese, Norte, Litoral, Turonensis (2008) De Las Estrellas (2009) Via Aurelia 2014- St Davids/Caldey Island 2016
    Well- the world seems to be split into warm-hearted and critical as usual!! I enjoyed Shirley Mclaine's book despite it going weirdish near the end, I also enjoyed Paul Coelho's. Hape's 'I'm Off Then' was a good laugh. 'The Year We Seized the Day' really annoyed me with the breath-taking arrogance of the two authors - but I still enjoyed it! The Cockleshell Pilgrim was utterly brilliant. There are many I've read that I loved but can't remember the titles or authors. But my top 5 are:
    Clear Waters Rising - you just can't beat Crane for being interesting, jovial and totally down-to-earth.
    Field of the Star (I think) Nicholas Luard - he laid it bare - give the guy a break!
    Sacred Roads by Nicholas Shrady - one chapter on the Camino - but so so good - one of the best travel books out there!
    Amber, Furs and Cockleshells by the late great Anne Mustoe - the Grand Dame of long-distance cycling - again just one chapter on the Camino but I just love it!
    Spanish Steps by Tim Moore - One of the funniest books I have ever read. (if you cycle - read 'French Revolutions')
    I think the only way to get a funnier book would be to persuade Bill Bryson to get a credencial...
    We are so lucky that so many people see fit to record their journeys, expand on the history and culture of the pilgrimage, the landscapes, the people - and that many of them do it with such style, verve and best of all humour! Keep on writing folks!
     
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  66. SYates

    SYates Camino Fossil AD 1999 Donating Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Francés 1999
    .
    too many to list all
    .
    Prague>Santiago 2014
    Via Regia/Ecumenical Pilgrims Way Germany Spring/Easter 2015
    Via de la Plata Feb/March 2016
    Via Regia/Ecumenical Pilgrims Way June&November 2016

    Currently: Walking the CF in winter 2016/17
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  67. judydaisy

    judydaisy Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Sarria - Santiago 2004
    Roncesvalles - Estella 2009
    Camino Ingles - 2012
    Tui - Santiago - 2014
    There have been so many suggestions that I have hesitated to add my own however, here goes
    - Buen Camino - a father-daughter journey from Croagh Patrick to Santiago de Compostela (Natasha and Peter Murtagh)
    - Pilgrims Road by Bettina Selby
    - Horsheshoes and Holy Water by Mefo Phillips
    - The Slowest Pilgrim by Harry Townsend
    - Every Pilgrim's Guide to Walking to Santiago de Compostela (not sure of authors)
    And lastly, the one that got me hooked on the camino was one by Laurie Dennett called A Hug for the Apostle

    Keep the ideas coming, thanks to many of the above posts, I will have books to keep me going for several years to come but I will continue to avoid the Shirley Macleine tome - couldn't bear it...
     
  68. tweedy48

    tweedy48 New Member

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    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Camino(s) past & future:
    September (2014)
    Thank you everyone for your thoughtful lists. I am walking next September with my daughter and have just started my reading. Presently I am almost finished Buen Camino by Natasha and Peter Murtagh and have enjoyed it immensely.

    Happy reading all.
     
  69. evan llewellyn

    evan llewellyn New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
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    Bedbugs and Bliss-ters, True Tales From the Camino
     
  70. petitewalker

    petitewalker Active Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances (2014 fall)
    Tweedy 48, when are you walking in September? My husband and I are leaving SJPP on September 12th and will be staying in Orisson. Maybe we'll meet along "The Way".
    Two of my favorite reads were Grandma's on the Camino which was the first book I read and gave me the confidence that being over 60 is not a barrier to walking the Camino and Women of the Way by Jane V Blanchard from my hometown of Sarasota, Fl. Her twist on the Camino was to interview women from all walks of life and ages and share their stories with us.
     
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  71. Kanga

    Kanga Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Francés (2001, 2003, 2004, 2015 and 2016), Le Puy (2009, 2010), Sête to Ste Marie Oloron (2011), Orleans to Poitiers (2012), Norte (2015)
    "Off the Road" by Jack Hitt
     
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  72. CaminoKris2013

    CaminoKris2013 Active Member

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    (2014)
    Hey petite walker, I am in Bradenton. I actually had chance to meet Jane. Hers was one of the first books I read. I am headed to Europe in 17 days and then to Madrid on the 21st. Feel free to pm me!
     
  73. cherrys

    cherrys Active Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances Sept/Oct (2013), Finisterre/Muxia Oct (2013), Camino Frances and on to Finisterre Sept/Oct (2016)
    Tim Moore's "Travels with my Donkey". And Hape Kerkeling's "I'm Off Then". I will have to start hunting up some of these others that I haven't read yet. Hope my library system has them.
     
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  74. KiwiNomad06

    KiwiNomad06 Veteran Member

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    Location:
    Palmerston North, New Zealand
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
    The book by Kevin Codd has been, hands down, the book I have enjoyed about the Camino as well. Very insightful, truthful, and inspiring.
    Margaret
     
  75. jayree

    jayree Active Member Donating Member

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    Location:
    Gig Harbor, WA
    Camino(s) past & future:
    SJPdP to SdC 2012
    Irun to Fisterra 2013
    Shikoku 2015
    CP 2016
    While in Santiago after walking the CF I wanted a book to read for the flight back home. In the bookstore across from the TI I found "Buen Camino ... beyond the journey" by Thea Hughes. I enjoyed the story and relived my walk as she beautifully described the towns and Camino ethos I had just witnessed.
    Perhaps not mentioned yet but enjoyable to me were
    "Walking the Camino... a modern pilgrimage to Santiago" by Tony Kevin ( Tony walked the Via Mozarabe and the Via de la Plata, Granada to Santiago) and
    "A Sense of Direction: Pilgrimage for the Restless and the Hopeful" by Gideon Lewis-Kraus.

    I agree that Kevin Codd's book is one of the best.
     
  76. RobertS26

    RobertS26 Active Member Donating Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances, Oct 2013
    Camino Frances, Aug 2014
    Camino Frances, Apr 2015
    I also have to highly recommend Father Kevin Codd's book, To the Field of Stars: A Pilgrim's Journey to Santiago de Compestela. After reading his book I found out that he lived nearby. I contacted him by phone and arranged a meeting. We have since become friends. He is even more cool in person than he is in the book.
    .
     
  77. KiwiNomad06

    KiwiNomad06 Veteran Member

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    Location:
    Palmerston North, New Zealand
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
    Thanks to judydaisy for mentioning - "Buen Camino - a father-daughter journey from Croagh Patrick to Santiago de Compostela" (Natasha and Peter Murtagh). I have climbed Croagh Patrick, and have since discovered that ancestors of mine are likely to have come from a village at its base, so I liked the sound of this title. Checked it out on Amazon and have begin reading it on Kindle. Looks like a good account...
    Margaret
     
  78. petitewalker

    petitewalker Active Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances (2014 fall)
    Hey Kris, don't know how to pm you, I'm not so good at computer stuff. Leaving in 17 days must be very exciting for you. I hope you are ready! Buen Camino!
     
  79. Metropolly

    Metropolly Guest

    Therapy, by British uber-author David Lodge. It's a novel, so it's not a detailed account of the Camino, but it was my introduction to the Way and, frankly, anything by Lodge is an absolute joy
     
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  80. JennyH94

    JennyH94 Veteran Member Donating Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Past: 2012 - Leon-Santiago, Hospitalera Refugio Gaucelmo, Rabanal 7/14. First Aid Camino 9/15.
    Thanks to everyone for all the fantastic recommendations.

    I'm an avid reader of Camino memoirs and the two most recent, which now appear in my Top 5, are, firstly, Bill Bennett's "The Way, My Way". Like Wayfarer (hi Wayfarer, I really hope that your recuperation is going well for you) and Jabbapapa, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Bill is so open and honest, and he has that wonderful Aussie larrikin sense of humour which had me chortling away while reading in the wee small hours when I should have been fast asleep! I couldn't put this book down.

    The second book is Hape Kerkeling's "I'm Off Then" - like many Forum members, I loved this book. Hape was so refreshing - the book was hilarious (his encounters with Jorge from Ecuador and the discussions on Jorge's 3 favourite German books is an example), there were unexpected beautiful, profound insights and the story of a promise honoured which touched my heart. In my view, the story of the promise honoured is worth the purchase price of the book alone.

    So, to the top 5 -
    1. "The Year We Seized The Day" - Eli Best and Colin Bowles.
    2. "The Way, My Way" - Bill Bennett
    3. "Sinning Across Spain" - Ailsa Piper
    4. "I'm Off Then" - Hape Kerkeling
    5. "The Camino - A Journey of the Spirit" - Shirley MacLaine. This book opened the door to the Camino for me over a decade ago.
    Cheers everyone - Jenny
     
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  81. Stefania13/14

    Stefania13/14 Active Member

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    I liked it too in part because of the things she did not do - like take some good advise until way late in the walk, etc.
    Stefania
     
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  82. Olivia Luna

    Olivia Luna Member

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    Hey there!

    I am in Orlando and starting off on June 2nd from Ponferrada.

    ¡Buen Camino!
     
  83. Kanga

    Kanga Moderator Staff Member Donating Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Francés (2001, 2003, 2004, 2015 and 2016), Le Puy (2009, 2010), Sête to Ste Marie Oloron (2011), Orleans to Poitiers (2012), Norte (2015)
    Are we allowed to add books about long distance treks that are not otherwise Camino related? On the basis of books that inspired me I'd have to nominate "Journey Through Europe" by John Hillaby and "Tracks" by Robyn Davidson
     
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  84. petitewalker

    petitewalker Active Member

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    Camino Frances (2014 fall)
    Hi Olivia, Buen Camino to you! I'm starting from SJPP on September 12th.
     
  85. katiemac

    katiemac New Member

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    Does anyone know where I can purchase an English camino gu
    does anyon
     
  86. Stacey Wittig

    Stacey Wittig Stand at the crossroads and look

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Flagstaff, Arizona
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Leon-Santiago (2005)
    Arles-Toulouse (2006)
    St. Jean Pied de Port-Burgos (2008)
    Lourdes-Santiago (2015)
    Le Puy-Santiago (2016)
    Camino Primitivo (2017)
    Favorite Camino books?

    I, too, like:

    1. Tim Moore's Spanish Steps: Travels with my donkey. Would also add:
    2. Nancy Louise Frey - Pilgrim Stories
    3. Kerry Egan - Fumbling
    4. Jean-Christie Ashmore - To Travel Far, Carry Less. And my own:
    5. Spiritual and Walking Guide: Leon to Santiago on El Camino.

    I, too, was disappointed in The Pilgrimage by Paolo Coelho. I think most of it was lost in the translation. Shirley MacClaine doesn't have that excuse, but then again she is an actor, not a writer. Cheers!
     
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  87. sriyantra

    sriyantra Active Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances September "2014"
    This is not intended to offend in any way but just to highlight the difference between what one person enjoys and another doesn't. If I had read "The Year we Seized the Day" before I booked my ticket to Spain, it would have put me off going entirely. I did enjoy "Sinning Across Spain" and the unique concept behind her walk and the book by Tony Kevin "Walking the Camino." While "The Day was Made For Walking" by Noel Brown was well written and informative, he decidedly looked down on those who don't carry everything and stay at non albergue accommodation as not being true pilgrims. Just my thoughts to add to the mix.
     
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  88. padreJL

    padreJL New Member

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    Tourist information offices in Basque countries have great guide book in various languages for free. Well worth picking up. NOT available in other regions. Otherwise Gronze.com gives excellent breakdown of stages. In Spanish but easy to get the gist without the language.
     
  89. ksam

    ksam Active Member

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    Location:
    New Jersey!
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Portuguese May "08" Camino Frances May/June "11" del Norte Sept/Oct "14"/Camino Invierno May 2016/ Camino Ingles Oct 2017
    Hmm, disappointng..but Alisa Pipers book doesn't seem to be available in any of the format's I can locate! Anyone wanna sell their used copy??
     
  90. Saint Mike II

    Saint Mike II Vetran Member Donating Member

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    Location:
    Illawarra Region NSW Australia
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Mozarabe/Via de la Plata - May 2013; cycled from Pamplona to Santiago Sep 2015; now planning to walk from St Jean to Santiago - starting May 1, 2017
    Yes its not on Kobo or Amazon - I have both, a hard back (purchased here in Oz - now autographed), but I found it electronically via a google search for around $12-13 (Australian dollars). I have just finished Spanish Steps (Camino with my donkey) - laughed til I had tears in my eyes; Year We Seized the Day - with a fair bit of Aussie humour - you need to understand what (zero) preparation they did; their quasi relationships and a few other events besides. So yes maybe its more " how not to walk the Camino" than a " how to" book.
     
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  91. Phillypilgrim

    Phillypilgrim Active Member

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    Camino Frances Sept.(2013) Camino de Madrid & Finisterre/Muxia Sept. (2014)
    I just finished reading, "A Sense of Direction: Pilgrimage for the Restless and Hopeful" by Gideon Lewis-Kraus, and I could not put it down. It follows Lewis-Kraus on his odyssey from walking the Camino Frances, the 88 temples around Shikoku Island Japan and finally a Hasidic Pilgrimage in the Ukraine.
    He is young, funny, hip and very smart. I climbed out of my head and into his, which is just what I needed before setting out tomorrow on my own odyssey!
     
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  92. Andy Hill

    Andy Hill Andy Hill

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    Location:
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    Camino(s) past & future:
    England to Santiago via the Pyrenees (1999 to 2007) and Tarifa to Astorga via Cadiz, Sevilla and Salamanca (2009 to 2013)
    Dear All,
    My absolute favourite (and it is surely to be listed in the great strings above) is "The Field of the Star" by Nicholas Luard. It is part camino diary interspersed with a harrowing account of the loss of his strong-willed daughter and this was the volume which started me on the fabulous camino experience. It describes terrible weather, german lady cyclists with moustaches, real tiredness and then a sense of achievement - a great book.

    Far less impressive is my own version at a slightly more humorous version of a trekker's account available on the kindle. It rejoices in the title: "Santiago the Slow Way or The Ramblings of an Idiot" and some slightly deranged walkers actually find it helps them get to sleep in dorms full of stentorian snorers!

    Good luck and great walking, Andy Hill
     
  93. sjhannes

    sjhannes New Member

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    Camino de Santiago: To Walk Far Carry Less by Jean Christie Ashmore. This was the most meaty useful book on packing for the Camino. Facts not fluff!
     
  94. Sue M 23

    Sue M 23 New Member

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    Camino(s) past & future:
    2015 Leon to Santiago di Compestela
    Great book ,one of my favourites.
     
  95. Lyndale

    Lyndale New Member

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    Location:
    Tacoma, Washington
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances Aug(2013), Finisterre, Sept (2013)
    By far my favorite memoir book of the Camino is Bill Bennett's "The Way, My Way". It' s honest but full of humor. Couldn't put it down. Hilarious account of walking the Camino Frances. Was hoping for a sequel and today we got it. Mr Bennett, an Australian film director, has released his newest Camino book "Photo Camino: A Personal Guide to Photography on the Camino". It's available on Amazon in the Kindle version. The photographs are excellent with full instructions ho how to get the best photos. Thanks to co authors Jennifer Cluff and Bill Bennett, we can all come home with better photos if even those using an iphone.
     
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  96. JennyH94

    JennyH94 Veteran Member Donating Member

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    Past: 2012 - Leon-Santiago, Hospitalera Refugio Gaucelmo, Rabanal 7/14. First Aid Camino 9/15.
    I also loved "The Way, My Way" - the book is written in such an engaging way and was so open and honest and full of humour as you say, also some beautiful insights.
    I'm looking forward to reading "Photo Camino: A Personal Guide to Photography on the Camino" - and will put into practice the knowledge I gain from this book this coming September when I start my bike camino from Pamplona.
    Cheers - Jenny
     
  97. Wiebmer

    Wiebmer New Member Donating Member

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    Location:
    Milwaukee Wisconsin
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Plan to walk the Camino as a couple in 2015.
    A Million Steps by Kurt Koontz

    Are we still voting for our favorite books? Mine (second only to Joyce Rupp) is A Million Steps. It's well written and gave us the best perspective on the Way...through a positive and joyous lens.

    Thank you for starting this list -- there are several books I plan to read!

    Ning
     
  98. crackmrmac

    crackmrmac Veteran Member

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    Shirley Mac Laine's book, no way, tried it twice and never got too far.
    Now, here's the thing, imagine some moment in future where Camino ain't possible. Name the book you would enjoy carer reading to you, for memories etc.
    Buen Camino.
     
  99. CaminoDebrita

    CaminoDebrita Veteran Member Donating Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Canby, Oregon
    Camino(s) past & future:
    Frances SJPP to SdC Oct/Nov 2015
    Frances Burgos toSdC March/April 2016
    W. Highland Way August 2016
    Camino Somewhere September 2017
    Oddly, I begin reading Kevin Codd's book about four months ago, and then it disappeared.

    It just reappeared on the top of my bookshelf at home. Where had it been? Was I just blind to it?

    I really enjoyed Kevin Codd's book. As an english teacher, I found the writing to be clean, free of errors, and rich with allusions and history. Codd is a priest, and he sprinkles his text with prayers and allusions to the bible. I enjoyed that.

    Most of all, I liked his very "human" admissions of imperfection and folly, and of his errors along the Camino.

    Codd's is the best I've read so far. Many of the books are just a bit too "rote".

    Deb
     
  100. DLJ

    DLJ Member

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    Location:
    Lake Tahoe, CA/NV
    Camino(s) past & future:
    (4/2012) St.Jean to Santiago; (9/2013) Geneva to Le Puy-en-Velay and beyond
    I would like to add my journal for your consideration. Whatever route you choose to walk to Santiago or Rome, or if your Pilgrimage is the daily journey of life "Journal Your Camino," has photos from the Camino, insights and quotes to give some guiding tips, and blank pages for you to record your own reflections on journey along the "Way." It also makes a great gift and motivator for your walking and wannabe friends. "Journal Your Camino," is available from Amazon, by David Jennings. Check it out.
     

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