"A beautiful interweaving of memoir and history, of driving narrative and insightful reflection." - Ken McGoogan, author of Dead Reckoning and Kerouac's Ghost
Accessible and entertaining, Road Through Time begins with the story of how anatomically modern humans left Africa to populate the world. She then carries us along the Silk Road in Central Asia, and tells of roads built for war in Persia, the Andes, and the Roman Empire. She sails across the seas, and introduces the first railways, all before plunking us down in the middle of a massive, modern freeway.
The book closes with a view from the end of the road, literally and figuratively, asking, can we meet the challenges presented by a mode of travel dependent on hydrocarbons, or will we decline, like so many civilizations that have come before us?
Mary Soderstrom lives in Montreal and is the author of fourteen other books of fiction and non-fiction. Her most recent work, River Music, was published in 2015.
"Mary Soderstrom has set herself a giant task in Road Through Time--one that begins with the first anatomically modern humans leaving Africa 50,000 to 80,000 years ago and ends on a bus zigzagging its way through today's South America ... [It] provides a lucidly written overview of this particular march through the lens of time: the discovery of horses as transport, the invention of the wheel, the establishment of early trade routes, and the expansion of empires through war. Soderstrom's narrative picks up steam, literally, as she takes us through the development of trains in the 19th century and automobiles in the 20th... Soderstrom transports us from the romance to the brutality of the road and leaves us wondering if there's room (or time) for still more marches across this aching planet."
Kamal Al-Solaylee, Quill & Quire