Arts, Entertainment, Living
Nov. 14, 2012
For half a century, we were told John Steinbeck's beloved road book "Travels With Charley in Search of America" was a work of nonfiction. It wasn't.
As former Post-Gazette staffer Bill Steigerwald proved on the road and in libraries during 2010, Steinbeck's iconic bestseller was a literary fraud. It was not a true or honest account of the cross-country trip Steinbeck made in the fall of 1960. It was mostly fiction and lies.
"Dogging Steinbeck" is Steigerwald's new ebook.
Part literary detective story, part American travel book, part history book, part book review, part critique of the mainstream media, part primer in drive-by journalism, mini-Steinbeck bio, it is the true story of his own 11,276-mile road trip across America and how he stumbled upon the truth about Steinbeck's last major work, ruffled the PH.Ds of some top Steinbeck scholars and forced the publisher of "Charley" to tell readers the book was too fictionalized to be taken literally.
"Dogging Steinbeck" is for sale on Amazon.com for $6.99 -- only $2.04 more than what Steinbeck's hardback sold for in 1962 when the U.S. dollar was worth about seven times more than it is today.
Anyone who's interested in John Steinbeck, the truth about "Travels With Charley" and how much America has changed in the last half century America should read it, Steigerwald's mother says, and help him recover the costs of his two year adventure.
Posts of interest:
“America Looks Good From Steinbeck’s Highway” is the last of eight print-side travel stories I wrote in 2010 for the Post-Gazette.