... can by enjoyed by none but the masochistic. To begin with its three hundred pages could be reduced to four sentences: (1) Thoreau was a most traveled non-traveler; (2) he read a great number of travel books; (3) he advised ""Live at home like a traveler"" because he was a transcendentalist, who believed that each piece of existence contains the fullness of the universe; and (4) he read about foreign places in order to confirm conclusions drawn from observations of Concord, his small plot of home. But instead of giving these ideas the brief treatment they deserve, Christie compiles names and summaries of almost all the travel books that Thoreau read. The reader is literally taken around the world on abstracts of travelogs. There could hardly be a duller course. Only the occasional comments on Thoreau's philosophy and poetry save this book from complete fiasco.