Geog 340 Book Review Assignment
The assignment is to read and write a review of a book that either
(1) describes a place or a trip in,
or (2) considers a 'regionalization' of North America
--- placing particular emphasis on whether and how the author creates
(or fails to create) a sense of place for the reader.
The review is to be approximately 1,250 words.
There are many books that describe journeys and places in North America.
A short list of examples is below, you may pick one of these, or
you may prefer to find and suggest one that interests you.
Before you begin, we need to have agreement on what book you are reviewing.
As background to this assignment, we will discuss in class the
notion of a 'sense of place'. We will discuss the responsibilities of a
book review writer, and, as needed, we will spend some time on
standards of academic writing, and tools to support the academic
Examples of Books Suitable for This Assignment:
Some of these are relatively recent and some from other eras;
do read with some eye toward the context of the writer.
- Bryerson, Bill (1998)A Walk in the Woods
- Cody, Robin (1995) Voyage of a Summer Sun:
Canoeing the Columbia River
- Heat Moon, William Least (1982) Blue Highways
- Heat Moon, William Least (1999) River-Horse
- Heat Moon, William Least (1991) Prairyerth: (a deep map)
- Hempton, Gordon (~2005) One Square Inch of Silence
- Lewis, M. and Clark Wm (~1809/2003) Journals of the Lewis and Clark
Expedition (abridged, G. E. Moulton (editor))
- McMurtry, Larry (2000) Roads: Driving America's Great Highways
- Mosher, Howard Frank (1997) North Country: a personal journey through
- Muir, John H. (1915) Travels in Alaska
- Powell, John W. (1875/1957) Exploration of the Colorado River
- Raban, Jonathan (1999)Passage to Juneau
- Steinbeck, John (1962) Travels with Charley
- Strayed, Cheryl (2011?) Wild: A Journy from Lost to Found
- Vollmann, William T. (2010) Imperial
- Bishop, Nathaniel H. (~1880). Voyage of the Paper Canoe.
From Quebec to Gulf of Mexico. 1874-75.
- Lewis & Clark (?) The Diaries of Lewis and Clarke
- MacGregor, John.(1968, reprint of 1828)
Historical and Descriptive Sketches of the
Maritime Colonies of British America
F1035.8 M15 1968
- Raitz, E. & Richard Ulack (1984)
Appalachia: A Regional
Geography. Land, People, and Development Westview Press.
- Stuart Chase (1931) Mexico: A Study of Two Americas.
[NB this is from another era, consider the source]
- von Humboldt, Alexander (1811) Political essay on the kingdom
of New Spain Hmltn Call No. F1211 .H921
- Woodward, Colin (2011) American Nations: A History of the
Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America
- Garreau, Joel (1981) The Nine Nations of North America
- Zelinsky, Wilbur (2011) Not Yet a Placeless Land:
Tracking an Evolving American Geography
A good self-directed approach to finding a suitable book is via
the UH Library's Hawai'i Voyager system.
In the online "card" catalog do an "Advanced" search,
specifying "description and travel" in the
Subject (SKEY) and a place, area, or region of interest
(e.g. "Great Plains") as a Keyword Anywhere (GKEY).
This is useful for finding books on a particular area (or subject) when
you don't know a title or author to seek in our library.