Winners of the Seventeenth Annual Solas Awards
The Travelers’ Tales editors and this year’s guest judge Scott Dominic Carpenter are proud to announce the winners of the Seventeenth Annual Solas Awards for Best Travel Story of the Year. Grand Prize winner Cherene Sherrard collected $1000 and the gold award for “The Weight of Paradise,” her moving tale about surfing while Black off the beaches of Oahu, Hawaii. Brian Reisinger won the silver award and $750 for “Ambush on the Cumberland Plateau,” his multigenerational story about hunting wild hogs in Appalachia. Pier Nirandara took the bronze award and $500 for “To the Young Mom on Flight 1122,” her tale about a trip to South Africa that is marked by grief. Here’s the complete list of winners.
A Hard Place to Leave
Vogue's Best Books of 2022
Restless to leave, eager to return: this memoir in essays captures the unrelenting pull between the past and the present, between traveling the world and staying home.
Starting in a dreary Moscow hotel room in 1983, weaving back and forth to rural New England, and ending on a West Texas trail in 2020, Marcia DeSanctis tells stories that span the globe and half a lifetime. With intimacy and depth, over quicksand in France, insomnia in Cambodia, up a volcano in Rwanda, spinning through the eye of a snowstorm in Bismarck, and atop a dumpster in her own backyard, this New York Times bestselling author, award-winning essayist and journalist for Vogue and Travel + Leisure immerses us in places waiting to be experienced and some that may be more than we’re up for. She encounters spies, angels, leopards, shoes, the odd rattlesnake, a random head of state, and many times over, the ghosts of her past. Each subsequent voyage leads to revelations about her search for solitude, a capacity for adventure, and always, a longing for home.
The Temporary European
“Vivid, funny, perceptive, intimate, and charged with a love of travel and a deep sense of humanity.” —Rick Steves, from the Foreword
20+ Years as Rick Steves’ Right-Hand Man
A candid account of how the sausage gets made in the travel business—told with affection, warts-and-all honesty, and a sense of humor.
What is it like to write guidebooks, make travel television, and lead bus tours for a living? Find out with Cameron as he samples spleen sandwiches at a Palermo street market, stews in Budapest’s thermal baths, survives driving in Sicily without going insane, and much more. Along the way, he shares many lessons learned from his favorite Europeans. You’ll also get a reality check for what seems to be a traveler’s dream job—working with Rick Steves and his merry band of travelers. Not just for Rick Steves fans but for anyone who loves Europe, The Temporary European is inspiring, insightful, and fun.
La Dolce Vita University – 2nd Edition
Come travel with La Dolce Vita University (L◆D◆V◆U) to the heart of Italian culture in the seductive spirit of la dolce vita. L◆D◆V◆U is the perfect sampler to indulge anyone curious about—or already in amore with—Italy and its remarkably rich trove of cultural treasures. In dozens of entertaining yet authoritative mini-essays, including 60 new stories and 40 new illustrations in this fully updated 2nd edition, L◆D◆V◆U lets you explore, at your leisure, fascinating aspects of Italy’s cuisine, history, art, traditions, style, legendary personalities, and so much more.
The book is organized alphabetically, but nothing is ever quite that straightforward when it comes to Italy. Even if you choose to read these mini-essays sequentially, you may very well feel as though you’re wandering the mysterious alleys of a medieval town, the hidden vicoli of a larger city, or even along the serpentine canals of La Serenissima.
The End of the World Notwithstanding
“Every word the right word, this book is a genuine keeper.” —Kirkus Reviews***Starred Review***
Rife with misadventure, brushes with death, and moments of existential insight, The End of the World Notwithstanding is a hilarious and reflective look at the emotional experiences that make everyday life exciting—and the physical ones that remind us we’re lucky to be alive. These nail-biting stories, all true, fill the reader with wonder, as in, “How do any of us survive?”
Encounters with wildfire, hideous insects, psychotic house pets, bad weather, gravity, predators, bullies, and the most potent force of all—fear—unfold in remote landscapes of the American West; on neon-splashed Hollywood sidewalks; in a Catskills summer camp for actors; in the Boston apartment of a famous senator; on a cliff high above the Mediterranean; beneath the streets of Paris. Goodwin looks for and finds meaning, if not security, in a clear-eyed acknowledgment of the human condition—and in the saving grace of laughter.
The Best Women’s Travel Writing, Volume 12
As Andrew McCarthy wrote in The New York Times Book Review, “For more than 20 years, Travelers’ Tales has been publishing books that might best be described as the literary equivalent of a group of travelers sitting around a dim café, sipping pints or prosecco and trading their best stories.”
Now comes The Best Women’s Travel Writing, Volume 12: True Stories from Around the World—the latest collection in the best-selling, award-winning series that invites you to ride shotgun alongside intrepid female nomads as they wander the globe discovering new places, faces, and facets of themselves.
“In story after story,” McCarthy wrote about the previous volume of The Best Women’s Travel Writing, “the refreshing absence of bluster and bravado, coupled with the optimism necessary for bold travel, create a unifying narrative that testifies to the personal value and cultural import of leaving the perceived safety of home and setting out into the wider world.”
The essays in this volume are as diverse as the destinations, exploring themes of kindness, transformation, nature, friendship, family, strength, and resilience.
EDITORS’ CHOICE — This Week’s Story
Pteropods in the Balance
By Laine Gonzales
Seventeenth Annual Solas Award Gold Winner in the Animal Encounter categoryClad in three layers of thermal underwear, insulated bib overalls, a parka, and waders, my range of motion is seriously impaired. I cautiously step into the Antarctic waters of McMurdo Sound — inching my bulbous “bunny boots" forward, carefully securing one foot before taking the next step. I am undeniably out of my element. This Southern California science teacher lives a routine existence, my days dictated by a 5:30 a.m. alarm and the structure of a high-school bell schedule. That’s not to say I don’t navigate tough terrain in the classroom, ever pivoting between the biological wonders of our world and the stark facts of a changing planet. My students, who are inheriting both the awe and the urgency, hang in the balance. Read more.