No hope, meaning, faith or desire to keep living. One year after the first tragedy, Neil was choosing between life and his own death. Finally, all he could decide on was motion. He got on his BMW R1100GS motorcycle, and over the next fourteen months, rode 55,000 miles, in search of a reason to live. On a journey of escape, exile and exploration, he traveled from Quebec to Alaska, down the Canadian and American coasts and western regions, to Mexico and Belize, and finally back to Quebec. While riding "the healing road", Neil recorded in his journals his progresses and setbacks in the grieving/healing process, and the pain of constantly reliving his losses.
He also recorded with dazzling, colorful, entertaining and moving artistry, the enormous range of his travel adventures, from the mountains to the sea, from the deserts to the Arctic tundra, and the dozens of memorable people, characters, friends and relatives he met along the way, and who increasingly contributed to his healing and sense of meaning and purpose. He begins the journey with nothing, "the Ghost Rider." What he finally attains is joy, love, and indelible memories of the most extrordinary journey of his life.
Ghost Rider is a bold, brilliantly written, intense, exciting, and ultimately triumphant narrative memoir from a gifted writer and musician, who started out as a man reduced to trying to stay alive by staying on the move.
Neil Peart is the drummer and lyricist for the legendary rocks band RUSH, and is the author of The Masked Rider: Cycling in West Africa. With his bandmates, he is a recipient of the Order of Canada.
An excellent book to read. At least up until Neil begins writing letters to "Brutus". Although a little entertaining, the letters to Brutus were more of a personal nature and added little to the book.
I enjoy reading Neil Peart books (this is my second), but the book was a little more difficult to read and became less interesting at the point of the "letters" segment.
Pick it up and make the decision for yourself.
Beautifully written by none other than rock band Rush's talented drummer/lyricist. This book is basically his memoir of his travels via motorcycle from Canada Alaska down the West coast into Mexico and Belize then back to Canada. This was a healing trip for him to recover from the grief of losing his teenaged daughter then wife within a 10 month timespan.
I would also like to recommend The Masked Rider: Cycling in West Africa also by Neil Peart. It is just as beautifully written. You almost feel as is you are traveling along with him.
I am a big fan of Rush, the Canadian rock group and this is the 3rd book by Neil Peart I have read. It details Peart's tragic loss of his daughter and wife in less than a year. Feeling lost like a ghost, he embarks upon a motorcycle trip to find himself over a span of 55,000 miles in over a year.
Peart's writing style is very engaging yet quite verbose. He tends to duplicate his story through travel observations, journal entries and in his letters to Brutus (his motorcycle buddy who was incarcerated during Peart's grieving time). I would set it aside for a few weeks when it became too wordy. Like Peart's journey, reading the story required an investment of time and I would have missed so many good parts if I had not finished it. Peart is a man bereft of meaning in his life and who mourns that loss in his own style. Not an easy read but well worth it for the thought provoking aspects he raises in addition to purging his demons and soothing his "little baby soul." The travelogue portions were detailed and fascinating, I wish a map was included in the back of the book to see the physical reality of where he went on those 55,000 miles.