My original publisher was acquired by Random House and for years they dithered before finally deciding they were too big to bother with a new edition of this book. They returned the publication rights to me and my super agent, Janet Rosen, soon found the good folks – the very good folks – at Chicago Review Press.
There was a 13-year gap between the 2nd and 3rd editions and, as you can imagine, that meant a great deal up updating to do and a lot of changes to be made. We also added new illustrations and lots of new photos.
Here’s an excerpt from a very generous review by author/reviewer Henry Kisor that ran in TrainWeb.com, the premier rail oriented site on the internet:
“Quite a few guidebooks to train travel in the Americas jostle for the reader's attention, but these days the freshest, most comprehensive and, frankly, the best is the brand-new third edition of Jim Loomis' All Aboard: The Complete North American Train Travel Guide. In clear and lively prose he takes in hand his readers... through the practical ins and outs of booking a trip on the national railroad. His bread and butter is plenty of brass-tacks information about planning the details of the trip, such as deciding upon accommodations, packing, dress, etiquette and tipping.”
Note, please, that while the book includes descriptions of the various routes offered by Amtrak in the U.S. and VIA Rail in Canada, it does not provide the typical mile-by-mile route guides. For one thing, both railroads provide detailed route guides for most of their trains. For another, there are too many other, more interesting things to discuss when it comes to train travel. Off and on over the coming weeks, I’ll reproduce some excerpts from the book here … how train travel developed, the transcontinental railroads in the U.S. and Canada, how trains and railroads work, and the future of rail travel in the U.S., plus how to book train travel and what to expect once you’re actually under way.
I find the whole business of rail travel fascinating and I wrote about all those things that interest me. If you’re at all into trains and train travel, I really do think you’ll like this book and I would very much appreciate any comments or suggestions for a possible 4th edition.