The Wrong Way for a Pizza

Paper: 978 1 85418 816 8 / $22.50
Published: December 2013  

Publisher: Thorogood
220 pp., 6 1/4" x 9 1/3"
color photos
Author and journalist Brian Mooney was winding down after walking 1,300 miles from Coggeshall to Rome when a friend made a teasing comment: “In the old days pilgrims didn’t have the luxury of flying back. They walked home!”

Two years later, Brian rose to the challenge. He packed his rucksack, laced up his walking-boots and set off to make the journey in reverse. The Wrong Way for a Pizza is the account of his ten-week walk from the banks of the Tiber to the banks of the Blackwater – a mirror-image of A Long Way for a Pizza, the book he wrote after he walked to Rome in 2010.

The author keeps bumping into the ghosts of his outward journey. He gets used to being told by Rome-bound pilgrims that he is walking backwards, and, with the sun behind him lighting up the Tuscan landscape, he revels in different vistas and new horizons. Varying the route from his outward journey, he crosses the Alps over a high pass from Cervinia to Zermatt and makes his way across the Jura to the Doubs, and then follows the Burgundy Canal to the Yonne and Seine, and on to Paris. After a fast march to Calais and a ferry to Dover, his arrival in Canterbury is greeted by a wall of indifference, but he finds a warmer welcome in the Essex new town of Basildon, where he spends the final night of his journey – although he cannot help reflecting that Basildon is not quite the Eternal City to which he has now walked there and back.

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Reviews & Endorsements:
“To travel with Brian Mooney is to enjoy the old roads, the slow lanes, and to see so much that the fast fail to see.”
- Sir Peter Stothard, author of On the Spartacus Road
“Brian Mooney blazes a trail northward across Europe like the summer swallow—a most enjoyable tale filled with character and determination, worthy of Saint Augustine himself."
- Harry Bucknall, author of Like a Tramp, Like a Pilgram and In the Dolphin’s Wake
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