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Uncommon Carriers, by John McPhee

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MadArchitect

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Uncommon Carriers, by John McPhee

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I'll post this in the suggestion thread for next quarter, when it's made, but I wanted to go ahead and throw this one out there for consideration. Honestly, I don't expect it to attract much attention, but McPhee is a great journalist, and I think it would be worthwhile for every one here to try a sample of his work. He's one of my favorite writers, and I'm glad to see he's still putting out fascinating books.Here's the NYTimes.com review that alerted me to the book's existence: www.nytimes.com/2006/06/18/books/review ... ld.htmlAnd here's the Amazon.com page for it: www.amazon.com/gp/product/0374280398/sr ... 8Editorial ReviewsFrom Publishers WeeklyStarred Review. McPhee's 28th book (after The Founding Fish) is a grown-up version of every young boy's fantasy life, as the peripatetic writer gets to ride in the passenger seat in an 18-wheel truck, tag along on a barge ride up the Illinois River and climb into the cabin of a Union Pacific coal train that's over a mile long. He even gets to be the one-man crew on a 20-ton scale model of an ocean tanker in a French pond where ship pilots go for advanced training. As always, McPhee's eye for idiosyncratic detail keeps the stories (some of which have appeared in the New Yorker and the Atlantic Monthly) lively and frequently moves them in interesting directions. One chapter that starts out in a Nova Scotia lobster farm winds up in Louisville, Ky., where McPhee is quickly beguiled by the enormous UPS sorting facility. In a more intimate piece, he takes a canoe and retraces Thoreau's path along New England rivers, noting the modern urban sprawl as well as the wildlife. "There are two places in the world
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