Friday, February 27, 2009

Queen of the Road by Doreen Orion

"I will never, ever, EVER, not in a million years, live on a bus."

So declares Doreen Orion, when her husband and fellow psychiatrist shares his dream of purchasing and refurbishing a bus in order to travel around the United States for a year. Doreen, a self-described princess, likes lounging in bed, staying in her pajamas as long as possible every day, and watching her husband cook and clean. She also is an avid shopper and has accrued quite a collection of designer clothing, shoes and accessories over the years - most of which will have to be left behind while on the road.

Doreen's husband, Tim, is too good to be true. He is a real go-getter and much more active than his better half. He is also the major impetus behind the bus adventure, with his wife's begrudging support. Their relationship is truly one of opposites, but they really balance each other out in a rather charming way. Together they work with a bus customizing company to create the home (on wheels) of their dreams.

After working through many of the kinks on their 3 week long test trip, the pair, along with their dog and 2 cats embark on the trip of a lifetime, during which they will visit 46 of the lower 48 states, as well as Alaska. As the trip progresses, Doreen finds herself opening up to new experiences, overcoming her bus phobia, enjoying the bus culture, and appreciating her husband more than ever. She even learns that all of her material possessions aren't really all that important to her any more.

Doreen's writing style is funny and engaging, and I especially enjoyed reading about some of the offbeat places that they visited. Each chapter begins with a martini recipe that somehow relates to their adventures. By the end of the trip, Doreen has christened herself the "Queen of the Road" and their bus has made the September issue of "Bus Conversions" magazine. Doreen and Tim weather multiple obstacles during the course of their trip, but, working together, emerge stronger both as individuals and as a couple. For further details on Doreen and Tim, see her website:

If you are intrigued by Doreen and Tim's journey, or would like to sample some other "road trip" literature we have here at the library, here are some additional books that may appeal to you:

Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives: An All-American Road Trip...with Recipes! by Guy Fieri.
Ilf and Petrov's American Road Trip: the 1935 Travelogue of Two Soviet Writers by Ilia Ilf.
Horatio's Drive: America's First Road Trip by Dayton Duncan.
Blue Highways: A Journey into America and Roads to Quoz: An American Mosey by William Least Heat Moon.
The Ride of our Lives: Roadside Lessons from an American Family by Mike Leonard.

All these and plenty more are available at the New Lenox Public Library - for further suggestions, please call, email or visit the Reference Desk. Happy armchair traveling!

1 comment:

Doreen Orion said...

My google alert alerted me to this review. What a lovely surprise! Thank you so very much. The book is already in 6th printing due to wonderful readers' word-of-mouth, so again, THANK YOU!

If any of your readers would like more information about my book, please head over to my fabulous website, And, for any in a book club, I've been calling into book clubs all over the country and it's been tons of fun (at least for me).

Thanks so much, again and QUEEN ON!