I Guess We Missed the Boat: A Travel Memoir

Barry Finlay
General Store Publishing House (2013)
ISBN 9781771230476
Reviewed by Cristina Lanzi for Reader Views (11/13)


People love to read on vacation, or at least I do. All of those long flights and waiting at the airport, the lethargic afternoons on the beach or the lazy evenings after long days of sightseeing, create the perfect situation to ease off with some light reading. “I Guess We Missed the Boat: A Travel Memoir” by Barry Finlay is definitely one of those light books.

“I Guess We Missed the Boat: A Travel Memoir” is a fresh, ironic and jovial travel adventure novel in which each traveler can recognize himself or herself. It is a travel book that is amusing and practical at the same time.

Eight very diverse Canadians are gathered in a hotel room in Miami and start recalling some very entertaining travel adventures they experienced. Should a car accident in Portugal give rise to smiley faces? Is there any possible comic potential while watching the luggage carousel go around with suitcases that pretty much look the same, hoping that yours didn’t get lost? The answer is yes when you read this book.

I am a devoted traveler and reading the anecdotes of the characters I couldn’t stop smiling thinking about when I was in the exact same situations myself! Barry Finlay is a travel writer who writes for travelers and who is able to express, in a very amusing and clever way, what continuously happens to tourists all over the world.

Reading this memoir is a nice way to idle away time between or during your travels. Not only does the author makes you feel as if you are living their same travel “misadventures,” but he also lets you know that your love for traveling is well understood. The only weak point of this book is that at times I found the events’ descriptions too detailed, causing a loss of enthusiasm.

I love traveling, I think it is an opportunity to step out of my regular life and see how other people experience daily living. As a traveler I learned what a beautiful place our world can be and now I know that Barry Finlay feels this way too, no matter how many accidents, discomforts or setbacks he (and every other voyager) had to deal with.

I need personality and realism to keep me interested when I am reading. I like books with concrete storylines, strong personalities and sense of humor. I think all of these fit into “I Guess We Missed the Boat: A Travel Memoir” by Barry Finlay.

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