Rating: 3 Stars
Genre: Travel/ Camino
File size: 1284 KB
Print length: 328 pages
The Best Way — El Camino de Santiago by Bill Walker is very different from other books I have read about the Camino. While I was reading the book, I felt as if I were chatting with the writer. Bill “Skywalker” Walker’s style is affable, at times opinionated, sarcastic, funny, and brutally honest. He tells it as it is, from his point of view, describing his adventures on the Camino Frances, the most popular pilgrimage across northern Spain. It is not a travelogue; there are only few descriptions of churches and towns. It is more about the impressions that towns, fellow hikers (pilgrims) and the Camino itself made on the author. I particularly liked the historical anecdotes that Mr. Walker includes in the narrative; many of these stories are obscure, making the book engrossing; and his juxtaposition of the past with the new makes for interesting commentary—on everything, not just the Camino. It is these observations and remarks that differentiate this book from others.
There are a few detractors. There are a few quotes that are not cited, which drives me crazy. The book could have used a good copy-edit. Also, I would have liked to learn more about Gavin, Mr. Walker’s nephew and companion on the pilgrimage. In spite of these, I did find the book a pleasant read and recommend it to those who enjoy seeing the world through another person’s eyes. Mr. Walker’s POV will definitely cause reaction: you will either like it or not. I enjoyed it and found his self-deprecating humor and honesty refreshing and entertaining.