The PERFECT Classic to Read if You Have Wanderlust (or Want to!)

A Bit of Background

For most of my adult life, I never ventured far from home. I was okay with this because, well, I loved being at home. I loved the feeling that being at home gave me.

I still do!

And why wouldn't I? I hand-picked every single item in it. When I am at home, everything I see around me was chosen because it produces happy hormones (Hello, endorphins and serotonin - my old friends!) in me when I look at it.

That second-hand sofa? I remember the Sunday I scored it for FREE off of the Facebook Marketplace - an 8-food avocado green authentic MCM complete with two bolsters and all four of the original wood legs still intact. 

That wood-topped buffet? I remember seeing it abandoned on the side of the road in my neighborhood (sans the top) and thinking how perfect it would be to serve our family holiday meals with a little paint, new hardware, and the easy addition of a stained wood top.

That 6-foot coffee table the size of a twin bed? I remember finding it on Craigslist for $7. I spent untold hours sanding it, reinforcing the openings so it could double as seating when needed, painting it, and replacing the legs with casters that could handle the sizeable heft of it.

No matter where I cast my eye at home, I see something I value. I see something that holds history. I see a multitude of things that served as the backdrop to a lot of precious memories.

Each thing is a snapshot of time spent living in my favorite place on the planet - home.

Now that our kids have grown, my territory has started to slowly expand. My husband and I have started making new memories together. Just the two of us. 

We're writing our history in the here and now, adventuring more frequently from home. Sometimes nearby. More often, farther abroad.

And do you know what? I'm feeling it.

A Bit of Inspiration

During a day trip with my husband earlier this year, we started listening to a book by an author I already loved. It was an audiobook that kind of hit us right in our recently acquired sweet spot: wanderlust.

The novel's ability to uniquely capture my newfound wanderlust while simultaneously touching all the reasons I loved being a homebody was the inspiration behind the NEW Seasonal Book Box.

History. Value. Adventure. Memories. It's all packed into this truly timeless classic alongside a smattering of...


This 1960s classic is all about discovering America during a simpler, homier time in our history. It's about shaking yourself loose from the everyday and engaging the spirit of adventure that lies in the heart of all of us. 


The author of the featured book traveled over 10,000 miles while compiling this American classic and his experiences can serve as starting points for your own adventures - starting with those closest to home.


This classic brilliantly portrays the melting pot that is America and how our differences need not divide us.

Cultural Appreciation

In our work-obsessed culture, many of us never travel far from where we live, meaning we don't gain the experiential knowledge that experiencing new places and meeting new people affords us. This classic vicariously introduces the reader to a broader cultural experience, which leads to a deeper appreciation of the cultures that are different from our own.


The author's months-long journey of exploration across our country's highways and byways provided ample time for reflection. Reading his thoughts as he traveled the open roads leads the reader to a parallel experience of self-reflection. 


The classic we are featuring in the NEW Seasonal Book Box was chosen, in the end, because of our own personal experience with it. It was fun! There were so many laugh-out-loud moments! There were some interesting tidbits, fascinating interactions, breathtaking descriptions, and downright entertaining tales. 

A Bit of Fun

For kicks and giggles last Monday night on Pretty Literate Live I invited everyone to guess what they thought the theme of the NEW Seasonal Book Box might be.

I wanted to give you a chance to guess, too!

  • Based on this blog, what do YOU think the theme is?
  • Do you think you know the classic novel we chose?
  • Do you think you know which classic American author is featured?

Think you've figured it out? Click here to see if you were right.

Remember when I said -

No matter where I cast my eye at home, I see something I value. I see something that holds history. I see a multitude of things that served as the backdrop to a lot of precious memories.

Each thing is a snapshot of time spent living in my favorite place on the planet - home.

THAT is the same feeling my husband and I got when we listened to the book we're featuring in this NEW Seasonal Book Box - a strong sense that this author saw something of value as he traveled.

That he knew he beheld history everywhere he looked.

That his experiences were creating precious and lasting memories, not just for himself, but for us, too.

This classic is his snapshot of his time spent living in his favorite place - America - just as surely as my house is of mine.

A Bit of Spoiler

Whether you consider yourself a homebody or the very air you breathe is permeated with wanderlust, you're invited to hit the open road with John Steinbeck as he traverses America alongside his beloved pooch, Charley, in this original #vanlife memoir. One of Pretty Literate's most creative book boxes yet, the Summer Road Trip Book Box is sure to deliver vicarious vacation vibes you'll treasure all summer long.

Make your own great memories as you travel through the pages of this uniquely American classic paired with five travel-ready novel treasures curated to make your trip truly epic.

If you have any questions, I'd love to answer them. Feel free to email

1 comment

  • I can’t leave a guess because I already know what the book and theme is- I already ordered it! I absolutely love to travel and visit new places, whether near or far from home. I also enjoy experiencing new things about places I’m already familiar with. A love of reading has really helped develop my wanderlust throughout my lifetime and the rewards of traveling whet my appetite for even more! I will say that a sometimes under-appreciated effect of travel is the sweet joy of returning back home ❤️.

    Lynda A.

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