A tantalizing sampler of American roadside attractions, ghosts and spooky local legends for audiences not yet familiar with the TV show of the same name and its attendant series of state-by-state print guides.
Shoveled haphazardly into thematic chapters, the several hundred stopovers range from old reliables like Roswell, Bigfoot, jackalopes and the Watts Towers to various art car shows, festivals like the annual Roadkill Cook-off in West Virginia and such undeservedly obscure locales as New Jersey’s Shades of Death Road and Maine’s International Cryptozoology Museum. The authors supply a paragraph or two of credulous commentary on each that includes specific places and people along with back story and, for the more elusive or supernatural oddities, locally gathered rumors and anecdotes. Small but sharp photos—or melodramatic Photoshopped images for the various specters—on every page add both atmosphere and additional credibility for readers who may have trouble believing in, for instance, the many giant fiberglass “Muffler Men” dotting the Midwest or all the buildings shaped like teapots, picnic baskets and various foodstuffs. Readers allergic to exclamation points may want to skip this one.
A browser’s delight, packaged to fit small coffee tables. (Infotainment. 10-13)