Review of A Toast to Travel

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Chris Alex Powell
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Review of A Toast to Travel

Post by Chris Alex Powell »

[Following is an official review of "A Toast to Travel" by Fraser Beath McEwing.]
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4 out of 5 stars
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A Toast to Travel is an engaging story that revolves around the travel adventures of the author, Fraser Beath McEwing, and his wife, Michelle, after retirement. Alongside the many trips to different countries was his rather peculiar interest in hotel toasters. Told in reverse order, the story ran from 2013 to 2020, during which he visited some countries about three times. He took special delight in making notes of the toasters in each hotel or resort they lodged in. His incredible travel companion, Michelle, also doubled as chief organizer all through their trips.

During his trips, Fraser learned a lot about the histories and cultures of many countries. How Indians were able to name and number their 33 million gods (yet didn’t have a single book that contained them all) still baffled him. He found mind-blowing ships in Greece, one of which could contain up to six thousand six hundred guests. It was strange enough finding out about the abundance of alligators in Florida, but hearing a story of an alligator used as a pet was just unbelievable. They had quite some experiences with different airlines and hotel meals (some of which caused terrible food poisoning). Amidst all the cultural discoveries Fraser and Michelle made, you will find a lot of exhilarating stories of the encounters they had throughout their tours as you read this book.

One of the things I love about this book is the author’s writing style. His sarcasm and sense of humor were epic. He never missed an opportunity to turn a little narration into something jocular. The author also knows how to pay attention to details and can, as a result, make you love something even before you experience it firsthand. I find this book simply interesting, not just because it is very funny, but because it also had a lot of enlightening discoveries that the couple made.

There is not so much to dislike about this book. Although there are really interesting details, a bad side to it is that the author got overly detailed that it became boring. Some details would make you want to skip and skip till you’ve almost missed out on something interesting. Aside from that, everything else was on point.

I would rate this book four out of five stars. The book is quite intriguing and informative. However, I deducted a star because I feel like if it had been a little shorter, some boring details would have been avoided.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves reading books about traveling. Just about anybody would enjoy reading about Fraser’s adventures, but a tourist would find it more valuable. Although the writing pattern is quite different from regular traveling books, there’s still a beauty in his own style that would make you want to see for yourself.

A Toast to Travel
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Post by Aswin3848 »

The book seems to be more on the good as well as bad experience of the writer during this travel. I hope one-day I could do the same after retirement. For now, grabbing this one for a read soon. Thanks for the review.
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Post by Adiskidan »

Thank you for your insightful review. Your review of the book definitely piqued my interest in this book, specifically the author's quirky fascination with hotel toasters and how his travels shaped his perspective on different cultures and experiences. The author's writing style seems to be relatable and humorous, and I am looking forward to reading the book. Thanks for warning readers about some detailed sections, which could have benefited from brevity. However, your review convinces me that this travelogue is an entertaining and informative book that deserves high praise. Your recommendation encourages me to read the book, and I'm looking forward to the tour of McEwing's travel and exploration.
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Meghan Soderholm
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Post by Meghan Soderholm »

It's captivating to hear memories of traveling. Having a book be tedious due to its length is a pet peeve of mine. Following your review and learning about the author's fascination with hotel toasters was intriguing. Your review persuades me to read this book.
“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift and that is why we call it the present.” - Eleanor Roosevelt
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