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KISS THE SUNSET PIG: AN AMERICAN ROAD TRIP WITH EXOTIC DETOURS by Laurie Gough

(published by Penguin in Canada and the U.S., and by Summersdale in the U.K.)

In a beater car named Marcia, Gough reflects on a life spent traveling as she heads west across the USA towards her dreamland of California. Back in her early twenties, she lived in a cave on a beach in California and found purpose in life, listening to the waves in the moonlight. The trouble is, now she has lost that enthusiasm. As Gough makes her way across the country meeting a colorful variety of characters and heading towards that half-remembered cave, she recalls past adventures around the world-coming face to face with a ghostly crone on a Greek island; braving the jungles of Sumatra; paddling down the Yukon River; teaching native kids in Canada’s sub-arctic; getting lost in Seoul, found in Thailand, and out of her head in Jamaica. As Gough closes in on the place of her dreams, she peels back the layers of cynicism that life builds around us, and finds that our old selves may still be inside us if only we bother to look.

READ EXCERPTS

Naxos Nights (salon.com)

Hard Class Across Sumatra (Globe and Mail)

Love Under the Midight Sun (The National Post) 

PRAISE FOR KISS THE SUNSET PIG

“Kiss the Sunset Pig is a wonderful read that captures the delightfully insane spontaneity of travel. (Gough) manages the perfect mixture of humour and poignancy with the frightening and bizarre, all lyrically told and at times, poetic. A gifted storyteller, she writes a book very difficult to put down.” The National Post

“Part memoir, part travelogue, Kiss the Sunset Pig is a lovely exploration into a person’s search for a home. (Gough) has the ability to situate a reader in a foreign landscape with the kind of vivid description that makes it possible to feel the land under her feet and to smell the air she is breathing.” The Globe and Mail

“Poignant and vivid….the way she writes about California is reason enough to pick up the book.” Los Angeles Times

“Reading this book is like spending a glorious weekend reminiscing with a funny, intelligent, and well-travelled friend. Her vivid descriptions of the highs and lows, the people she meets and the real lives she steps into, are at turns, gripping, witty, profound and inspiring. An enjoyable read.” Real Travel magazine (UK)

“Thought-provoking, bursting with life and gorgeous in its descriptions of far-flung destinations, Kiss the Sunset Pig is a transporting read to be enjoyed on planes, trains and kayaks. And if you’ve been there, done that and bought the semi-detached, curl up with this book on your living room sofa for one last adventure by proxy.” Chatelaine magazine

“Gough has a gift for self-deprecatingly wry humour. Her retelling of her ride on the Indonesian ‘Bus of Death, Debauchery and Discomfort’ is a true gem.” Winnipeg Free Press

“No ordinary American travelogue, Kiss the Sunset Pig is an insightful, personal odyssey.” Outpost magazine

“Kiss the Sunset Pig – an uproariously funny and profound account of Laurie Gough’s drive west across America. Five out of five stars.” Traveller Magazine (UK)

“Kiss the Sunset Pig is elegant, funny and poignant. I couldn’t bear it to end.” Polly Evans, UK author 

“Through tales of awe, exasperation and much humour, Gough drives the reader home.” The Ottawa Citizen

“In Naxos Nights the author brilliantly contrives to engage the reader so forcefully, it becomes impossible to put the story aside at the finish. It’s a tale to savor, to read and re-read.” Judges of the Tom Howard/John H. Reid Short Story Contest (where Naxos Nights won second prize in a nation-wide short story contest in the U.S.)

“Kiss the Sunset Pig is a not just a traveler’s travel book. Whether you journey from the comfort of your armchair, or you’re on-the-move with a knapsack, Sunset Pig will remind you why we travel, dream, and live. Unlike many writers who use travel as a meditation on home, Gough’s travels are meditations on identity. This gives the book a mythical quality: The reader is drawn into Gough’s inner journey, where her cumulative wisdom is revealed tantalizingly slowly through each travel segment, the way a waking mind pieces together a profound dream, bit by luscious bit. Like conversing with an old, dear friend, reading Kiss the Sunset Pig is inspiring and enlivening. With her uncompromising need to explore her world, Gough inspires the reader to live an authentic, full life, to expand with the universe, and find her way back home.” Woman’s Post

“Gough is a fearless and inveterate solo traveller who thinks nothing of hitchhiking or grabbing a second-class bus to her destination, or throwing down her sleeping bag on the beach once she gets there..There are several refreshing things about this book but mostly, I liked Gough’s down-to-earth, unhurried, unassuming tone and the way in which the stories simply unfold, as if you were listening to them while sitting around a campfire with a bottle of wine.” Vancouver Sun

“Laurie Gough’s writing is often intimate and always inviting. Even those who have never gravitated towards travel writing will be pleasantly surprised by the fresh and intriguing view of the world that Laurie Gough offers in Kiss the Sunset Pig.”
Marcie McCauley, Author and Reviewer

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