12,172 book reviews and counting...

The Gran Tour Reviews

The Gran Tour by Ben Aitken

The Gran Tour: Travels with my Elders

Ben Aitken

Score pending

1 review

Imprint: Icon Books Ltd
Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
Publication date: 3 Sep 2020
ISBN: 9781785786488

One millennial, six coach trips, one big generation gap.

5 stars out of 5
10 Sep 2020

"this book is a light-hearted travelogue ... But it’s so much more than that as well"

Aitken seems the perfect kind of person for holidays such as this. ‘Call me easily pleased but, to my mind, there’s nothing like walking in a new town, with no plan other than to run an eye over the place.’ He likes his single bed: ‘I find the lack of options restful.’ And boy, can he write. Someone he meets in a pub is ‘a committed apostle of Malbec’. Contemplating the shared TV references that are vanishing in the age of YouTube, he says he ‘didn’t pursue the knowledge, it simply landed on me, like cultural shrapnel’. The pen portraits of his fellow holidaymakers are wonderful, all the more so because Aitken leaves you to draw your own conclusions. One man goes out of his way to boast that he has loved his wife ‘every minute since I met her. Not so much as a tea break.’ Later, Aitken notes how happy she looks when she’s away from him.