Staff Picks: Pacific Northwest Travel

The Pacific Northwest is a great place to be in the summer and the University of Washington Press publishes books that can help you unlock the historical, natural, and cultural wonders of this region. We asked several press staff members what books they recommend to friends and family  members traveling to the area and have included a few of those responses below. Browse this album for a more complete listing of our regional titles and enjoy a 20 percent discount on all of those titles for the entire month of June. Just reference code WPNW when ordering online or at 1-800-537-5487.

Marianne Keddington-Lang, former Senior Acquisitions Editor

How to Read the American West: A Field Guide
By William Wyckoff

“What better way to spend the summer than discovering a new way to look at the landscapes of the American West. In this beautifully illustrated field guide, Bill Wyckoff reveals surprising patterns and asks intriguing questions about how people have adapted to and changed the region. Tuck this fine book in your car or backpack and explore.”

Mary Ribesky, Assistant Managing Editor

Discovering Totem Poles: A Traveler’s Guide
By Aldona Jonaitis

“Visitors to the Northwest can create a unique travel journey using this full-color guide to totem poles of the Inside Passage. Vibrant maps locate more than fifty poles in destinations ranging from Seattle to Juneau. A must for the traveler who loves Northwest Native arts and culture.”



Linda Tom, Credit and Accounts Receivable Manager

Exploring Washington’s Past: A Road Guide to History
By Ruth Kirk and Carmela Alexander

“It offers interesting facts about many Washington state communities. A nice book to have while exploring the state, the index also allows you to search by town or people that developed its history.”


 Tim Zimmermann, Assistant Acquisitions Editor

Hiking Washington’s History
By Judy Bentley

“I can’t decide if Hiking Washington’s History is a trail guide with really engaging history or an accessible state history based around well-chosen hikes. It’s a great way to learn about the exploration and settlement of Washington, about its indigenous peoples’ relationship with the land, and about its weird trivia, all while experiencing the state’s natural beauty.”


Kirby-Diane Murphy,  Production Coordinator

No-No Boy
By John Okada

“The year was 1977. I was a recent transfer student to the UW. As a struggling art student far from home, I sought solace in the many used bookstores on the Ave. One book I picked up was No-No Boy by John Okada. A very moving story set in my new home Seattle (and on the UW campus). I walked the same streets and smelled the same smells. I couldn’t put the book down and remember finishing it in one sitting. I used it as my personal walking tour of Seattle’s International District and looked for other landmarks mentioned in the book. I never dreamed I would be working for the publisher of this book, nor could I have imagined I’d be handling the production of future reprints of No-No Boy. Every time I send this title off to the printer for reprinting, I can’t help but remember the cold, rainy day when I first held this book in my hands. (As a little aside to Mariners fans, the main character’s name is Ichiro.)

As I retire next month, I recently completed the 16th and LAST reprint of our original edition of  No-No Boy. This August a brand new edition of No-No Boy will be available. A new cover with a haunting original drawing has been designed. Besides new cover, a foreword by Ruth Ozeki has been added to this important work by John Okada. Here’s to a long title life for one of my favorite books.”

1 thought on “Staff Picks: Pacific Northwest Travel

  1. sandvick

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    As a resident of the Pacific Northwest, I thought it would be fun to share books that the staff of the University of Washington Press blog believed were perfect for traveling throughout the region this summer. These books cover the historical, natural and cultural features of the region. The books include:
    1. William Wyckoff, How to Read the American West: A Field Guide
    2. Aldona Jonaitis, Discovering Totem Poles: A Traveler’s Guide
    3. Ruth Kirk and Carmela Alexander, Exploring Washington’s Past: A Road Guide to History
    4. Judy Bentley, Hiking Washington’s History
    Double secret tip: It rarely rains here in the summer. Don’t tell anyone.

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