A Thousand Miles To Santiago
Moments and Mediations along Europe's Great Pilgrimage
by Shawn Herron
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Pub Date 15 Nov 2022 | Archive Date 21 Nov 2022
Believing a more fulfilling future awaits him elsewhere, Shawn leaves his career in Washington, DC, and embarks on a year-long adventure. On the final leg of his journey, he travels to Europe and spends months walking a thousand miles across France and Spain, following the ancient pilgrimage road known as the Camino.
Part memoir and part travelogue, in this book Shawn vividly describes some of Europe's most spectacular landscapes, and shares the challenges he encounters with language barriers, foreign customs, and the physical hardships of life as a pilgrim. Travelling in the centuries-old footsteps of the pilgrims who've gone before him, he seeks to uncover the true meaning of a pilgrimage.
As he adjusts to the day-to-day rigors of such a long journey, Shawn sees the Camino's rich connection to history. He delves into the lives and legacies of the figures associated with some of the milestones along his walk, revisiting the folklore surrounding the lives of Sainte Foy and the rise of Christianity, Roland and the advent of chivalry, and El Cid and the fate of the Reconquista.
Sharing tales of thieving monks, savage priests, and banished knights, Shawn brings Europe's colorful past to life. While sifting through fact and legend, he provides a sweeping narrative of the medieval ages as it relates to Europe, Christianity, and this pilgrimage.
As his own journey unfolds, Shawn finds humor and wisdom in each misstep. He shares the insights that come to him as he faces the obstacles between him and his goal. Walking over mountains, across plains, and through storms, Shawn embraces the commitment required to fulfill his dream. Through this journey of self-discovery, Shawn learns what it truly means to be a pilgrim, and finds what we all seek-a life of meaning and purpose.
Pick up your copy of A Thousand Miles to Santiago and start the adventure today!
Average rating from 15 members
The cover caught my attention straight away!
I enjoyed reading Shawns travelogue. Every journey is unique and beautiful in its own way. Shawn left his old life behind in Washington and dared to embarks on 1 year long adventure - something what we all consider doing. I love hiking and Spanish landscape therefore his pilgrimage walk painted a marvellous picture in my mind. The changing terrain and views, one foot in front of the other!
Thank you for a good read.
A Thousand Miles To Santiago is a book that had me invested the entire time and is perfect for fans of books such as Wild or any fan of Bill Bryson.
Shawn Herron brings to life his journey across France and Spain and helps you feel like you are there in Europe and allows you to travel without ever getting on a plane.
I really enjoyed the insight that we get into Herron’s life and how this journey allowed him to grow as a person before entering Politics but also the culture that he learned as he traveled.
Overall A Thousand Miles To Santiago is a fun, well written memoir/travel book that let readers see the beauty and culture of Europe.
Nice easy read. Not a lot of content unsurprisingly as Shawn mostly has a lonely experience. I did enjoy the historical detail regarding the rise of Christianity though.
With winter rolling in, we could all do with a bit of escapism and the story of Shawn's pilgrimage across France and Spain to Santiago is just the ticket. Filled with some lovely historical details across the rolling miles and changing landscape, we look into the background of the sites he passes along the way, how Christianity has changed over time and what it means to take on a journey as large as this.
A nice little travel book for fans of the likes of Bryson or Mcfarlane.
I haven't read very many travel-logs but I found this one very interesting as I have always had a place in my heart for e lCamino de Santiago. A lovely memoir full of humor and the authors own knowledge.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading about the author's journey along the Camino. He mixes historical information about stops along the way with his personal experiences of the trek. It's the perfect book for people who are looking to try one of the routes themselves, travel fans, people interested in the history of the Camino, or all three.
Thanks, NetGalley, for the ARC.
A Thousand Miles to Santiago by Shawn Herron
If you re an adventurer or a historian, Shawn’s book of his pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in Spain will delight you. Starting in France with a trip over the Pyrenees Mountains, Shawn hikes for months with barely a day off to arrive at this famous destination.
With his backpack loaded with everything he will need for his journey, Shawn grinds out many kilometers per day, only to rest overnight in a dormitory type space with other pilgrims. Getting to meet new people and challenge/find himself are his goals.
Interesting day to day treks are described, mingled with detailed stories of Spain’s ancient history. El Cid? Covered! Battles between the Moors and the Christians? Covered! Though a little too heavy on the history for me, I realize that it was difficult balance.
A thank you to#BooksGoSocial and #NetGalley for this ARC for my review.
The Camino de Santiago has long intrigued me, though I have yet to journey it myself. So, I jumped at the chance to read this book!
The read combines memoir and history--and focuses a fair bit more on the latter. Readers wanting to know about the historical element of the Camino, whether simply to learn, be an armchair traveler, or undertake the Camino themselves one day, will find this the perfect resource in that regard. I wasn't really familiar with its French element, and really appreciated learning more about that. Herron writes well, and made the history accessible and vivid in my mind's eye.
I wish we'd gotten to see more inside Herron's own head, though, as he walked: his whys and wherefores, thoughts and wonderings as he walked, and life decisions post-Camino. We got a little of it, but I came away definitely wanting more.
Still, a worthwhile read, and one I'd happily revisit either for the history itself or to continue contemplating my own (far, far, _far_ out there) Camino walk.
I received an eARC of the book from the publisher via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.
Entertaining book about the Camino supplemented with lots of historical information about this famous pilgrimage. Perfect for those who love reading about the Camino or might be planning a trip to walk this famous trail.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.