Taras Grescoe has written books that have changed the way we
look at illicit substances, in The Devil''s Picnic, and
how we think about the world''s seafood, in Bottomfeeder.
In Straphanger, Grescoe hits the commuter road in a global
quest to understand and illuminate the challenges of the
post-automobile age. Straphanger is not just another attack on
automobiles and suburban sprawl but the most entertaining and most
thorough examination of global car culture yet written, and an
empowering tool kit for anybody looking for alternatives to a
car-based lifestyle. Ultimately, its subject is the city, and it
offers a global tour of alternatives to car-based living told
through encounters with bicycle commuters, subway engineers,
professional boulevardiers, idealistic mayors and disillusioned
trolley campaigners. Along the way, Grescoe meets libertarian
apologists for the automobile, urban planners who defend sprawl,
champions of hydrogen and biofuels, and traffic engineers fighting
to reduce congestion.
In a world of skyrocketing gas prices and political unrest in
the oil-rich corners of the world, Straphanger is an
essential book that addresses one of the most critical discussions
of the near future.