Troubador Little Interactions

Released: 23/11/2021

ISBN: 9781800465589

Format: Paperback

Review this Book

Little Interactions

Conversations and Observations across America

by

The late A.A. Gill, the masterfully dyslexic wordsmith and long-time source of inspiration, wrote that “America didn’t bypass or escape civilisation. It did something far more profound, far cleverer: it simply changed what civilisation could be.”

Little Interactions is a ten-week field study of this sentiment. It is a series of vignettes, capturing the conversations and observations experienced along a 6,500km bike ride, which begins amongst the marble statues of Washington D.C, continues through the bluegrass fields of Kentucky, across the Plains of Kansas, up the spine of the Rockies, and along the coastline to Vancouver, Canada.

It is a linear account of the journey, written to be dipped in and out of, which detours to make time for reflections on random musings and formative experiences. A quick ten minutes spent in coal mining Trump-land, to longer sections focused on the wild expanse of the West, that also makes room for anecdotes on gun control, English park scenes and friendship.

An ideal read for the restless individual, who is yearning to realise a pipeline dream. Putting down Little Interactions should be the first step forward in the direction of the front door, where another journey begins, and new memories are created.

Ali Macleod - Little Interactions

Unputdownable - the highest accolade possible...

I read 30-40 books a year - all chosen from a real interest in the subject or the author. Most require at least a degree of perseverance, whilst a rare few pull me along at a gallop and are swallowed in one or two gulps over a day or two, triggering or sustaining an appetite for more by the same author.

For example:-

Notes From A Small Island, led to many long and happy adventures with Bill Bryson encompassing an astounding Lifescape of subjects, all approached with that great knack for description and for winkling-out fascinating facts and interconnections, all liberally sprinkled with the funniest of observations and references.

A Sort Walk In The Hindu Kush, took me to astonishing landscapes meetings and adventures with Eric Newby.

Rory Stewart's daring adventures in Afghanistan in The Places In Between, was another.

Ali Macloed is jostling for position amongst these unputdownable authors.

Once Ali gets into his stride, and I allowed his sometimes challenging originality in description of people places and feelings to connect with my own lexicon of images and references, in just a few pages I found myself there on the road sharing the adventure in my own internal technicolour. Quite an achievement and hopefully the first of many adventures.

Thank you Ali.

by Peter Aldiss


Thoroughly enjoyed, easy to duck in and out of. Always brings you back for more.

by Andy


An engrossing and lighthearted overview of middle America. Amusing anecdotes. Couldn't put it down.

by Anne


I felt as if I was on the journey with him ( without having to cycle it myself, thank goodness). Such interesting insights into the people and scenery of the different states. Ali, I wonder where you will travel to next. I look forward to reading about your next adventure.

by Amanda


Engaging account of cycling adventure across USA with good mix of anecdotes, thoughts, and descriptions and providing insight into current social and political issues as well as US history and geography. Sometimes amusing, other times perceptive the author gives an insight into the physical and mental challenge of the ride. Hopefully many readers will dare to step outside their own comfort zones.

by Nick Armitage


A wonderful read. The synopsis on the back cover modestly suggests 'a potentially good read' but it's much more than that. Honest, insightful and frequently hilarious I'd definitely recommend it for anyone who's experienced or wishes to experience the kind of adventures that play out on petrol station forecourts more often than mountain top summits.

by Greg Hilson


This book describes the ambitious and borderline crazy cycling trip across America. It portrays the more obscure part of the country between its two coastlines, whilst giving an insight into what goes through one's mind when cycling for kilometers day after day. Narrated in snippets, with a slightly self-deprecating British humour, it shares the warmth of fleeting encounters along the roads, the moments of strife, and those of joy. It simultaneously made me want to go out on a discomforting journey and appreciate being in the comfort of my home.

by Mathilde


A refreshing insight to Trump’s America from the perspective of a determined pair of British cyclists. Reflections of America as it really is rather than the soft soap of most travelogues. Personal and yet empathetic to the ordinary views of US citizens in the hinterland between the main east and west coast civilisations. Something about this book yells at the reader to go and explore for yourself. I might just do so !!

by Steve Bennett


While the back cover invites us to dip in and out of this cycling adventure, I eagerly followed the trip from a hesitant start in New York to the triumph and mixed emotions of the ending in Vancouver. Full of witty anecdotes, insightful observations and colourful characters the author invites the reader to pedal beside him, skillfully sharing the ups and downs of his journey. An inspiring read for both the aspiring adventurer and the armchair traveler.

by Carolyn Dew


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