A Washington Post Best Book of the Year
A San Francisco Chronicle 50 Best Nonfiction Book of the Year
On a chance visit to Plymouth Rock, Tony Horwitz realizes he’s mislaid more than a century of American history, from Columbus’s sail in 1492 to Jamestown’s founding in 16-oh-something. Determined to find out what happened in between, he embarks on a journey of rediscovery, following in the footsteps of the many Europeans who preceded the Pilgrims to America.
Blending history, myth, and misadventure, A Voyage Long and Strange captures the awe and drama of first contact. Vikings, conquistadors, and French voyageurs are among those who roamed an unknown continent in quest of grapes, gold, converts, even a cure for syphilis. Though most failed, their exploits left an enduring mark on the land and people encountered by late-arriving English settlers.
Tracing this legacy with his own epic trek—from Florida’s Fountain of Youth to Plymouth’s sacred Rock, from desert pueblos to subarctic sweat lodges—Tony Horwitz explores the revealing gap between what is enshrined and what is forgotten. Displaying his trademark talent for humor, narrative, and historical insight, A Voyage Long and Strange allows readers to rediscover the New World.
The Pilgrims didn’t think much of Cape Cod. “A hideous and desolate wilderness,” William Bradford called it. “Full of wild beasts and wild men.” Rather than stay, a small party from the Mayflower sailed ahead, searching for a winter haven. In December 1620, they reached Plymouth, a place “fit for situation,” Bradford wrote. “At least it was the best they could find.”
On a New England road trip a few summers ago, I washed up in Plymouth, too. It could have been Dedham or Braintree or some other pit stop on the highway
What happened in North America between Columbus's sail in 1492 and the Pilgrims' arrival in 1620? We followed two explorers as they searched for answers on the streets on NYC for Tony Horwitz's A Voyage Long and Strange.
An irresistible blend of history, myth, and misadventure, A Voyage Long and Strange captures the wonder and drama of first contact. Vikings, conquistadors, French voyageurs--these and many others roamed an unknown continent in quest of grapes, gold, converts, even a cure for syphilis.
On the Trail of Vikings, Conquistadors, Lost Colonists, and Other Adventurers in Early America