Sucky Book Award

As some of you know, A Reader's Respite has been silent for the past week. That's because we were busy traipsing across the country of Belgium. Now traipsing across an entire country sounds like a lot of work, but because Belgium is roughly the size of Maryland, it's not as daunting as it sounds.

Or at least it shouldn't be. But thanks to this absolutely useless book, it was much more difficult than it had to be.

Yes, we are officially giving a Sucky Book Award to this one. Useless maps, out of date information, and the most disorganized approach to visiting this beautiful country led this book to it's ultimate fate:

A bonfire in our backyard.

A Reader's Respite never thought we'd light a book on fire

Going to Belgium? Save yourself $20 and just email A Reader's Respite. We'll give you a better low-down and we won't even charge you for it.


  1. I'm really disappointed that D-K books would put out an unhelpful guide. I usually like their books. On the bright side, did you do S'Mores?

  2. Wecome back Michele! We missing your happy self around here. As for the book, well we have had similar experiences in Poland. Apparently countries in Europe are in a constant state of flux with regards to the road systems, etc. We even bought a Garmin with maps as recent as 8 months old, and were still left for dead. Anyway, I still look forward to hearing about your adventures and seeing pictures!

  3. I bought the Eyewitness Travel Alaska book before I went to Alaska...and I must agree on your. It was an attractive format, nice photographs but very third rate in terms of information.

    ..and I don't think Alaska is changing that much.

  4. Next time you go, take a copy of King Leopold's Ghost by Adam Hochschild, so you can read all about how all those fancy palaces actually got financed! It's an unforgettable book, and you won't need a bonfire afterwards.

  5. Belgium: All I have to say is Brugge, Brugge, Brugge..... Oh having a friend who lives in Antwerp so you don't need no stinkin guide book!

    I love Belgium.

  6. What a fun trip - I love Belguim! I'm sorry that book let you down, though.

  7. Hope the book didn't spoil Belgium for u. It's really beautiful..

  8. I haven't been to Belgium, but if I go, I will definitely email you.

    Wow DK books?! I haven't used them. I usually use other travel guides or word of mouth.

  9. What, no give-away on this one?

  10. Hi All - it's so good to be back and "see" you all again....I missed you guys! Actually it was a great trip, despite the guide book, LOL, and so much fun.

    Rhapsodyinbooks - how right you are. I've read that one a couple of times now and it does tend to take away a bit of the awe over Leo's grand buildings, doesn't it? If ever there was a king with a inferiority complex, I think he was it. And as beautiful as some of his projects were in Bruxelles, they still don't compete with those he was trying to compete with, which I think is the blood price on that one.

    Beth - spent 3 days in Brugge and it was FABULOUS. (Antwerp was nice, too, but Brugge....WOW).

    The guide book didn't ruin the trip (that was my mom's job, HA), but I kept wanting to throw the damned book at a wall somewhere, or at least in front of oncoming traffic.

    I'll post some pics here in the next few days!

  11. I missed your posts!
    A daily laugh is important for me you know!

    Belgium :D
    Gosh! that book has to be REALLY bad :S

  12. I will have to keep that in mind if I ever travel to Belgium! I've always used Fodor's Travel Guides in the past, so I don't have any practical experience with the DK books.

  13. Well - Belgium sounds way cool! Yuck on the sucky book - usually DK is quite good :(

  14. Those Eyewitness books are long on pretty pictures and short on practical information. We went to Belgium in 2007 with a Frommers and had good luck with it. Did you hit any of the Trappist breweries?

    Sig-o and I had to burn a map of Seattle once. There's nothing so wretched as bad travel guides.

  15. Did you have a good time? Where are the pics? We want to seeeeee!


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