Cold Beer and Crocodiles: A Bicycle Journey into Australia
by Roff Smith
Release Date: 15 August, 2000
A captivating story. I first read of Roff's adventure in his three separate articles for the National Geographic in 1999. I thought at that time how wonderful it would be for the author to write a book about his cycling tour around the continent of Australia. You can imagine how surprised I was to discover his recently published book. This book is very entertaining. Roff has a great sense of humor and he demonstrated a willingness to reach out and befriend all sorts of people along his journey which really inspired me to become more aware and accepting of the people I meet. The author's use of Australian phrases and his detailed descriptions of his personal experiences, landscapes, cities, towns, and the people who inhabit them makes the book hard to put down.
If I could summarize this book in one sentence, it would be 'Blue Highways in Australia on a Bicycle.' Roff Smith's writing style and general outlook on people and the road is very similar to William Least Heat-Moon's classic novel, Blue Highways, and as such if you liked that book, you'll enjoy this one.
The book is more of a 'describe the interesting people I met and places I visited on my spiritual journey' travelogue book than it is a humor book; in fact, it's rarely funny. If you're looking for something similar to Bryon's In a Sunburned Country, you'll likely be disappointed, and I recommend that book or Tony Horowitz's One for the Road instead.