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I love reading. (Probably why this isn’t the first book list we’ve posted on this blog!)
I try to read at least 52 books a year (or one a week) and this year I’ve been reading a ton of books on RV life. And there are more and more coming on the market every day! I’m in the research phase of working on my own book and scoured Amazon for all of the best books on RVing. And I’ve read so many good ones so far that I had to share a few of my favorites. 🙂
Moving Away by Brooke Baum
For anyone who is in that transition of moving into an RV or just toying with the idea of RV life.
Moving Away is all about what I consider to be the worst part of jumping into RV life: leaving your friends and family behind. In her book, Brooke focuses on what it looks like to decide to move away, tell your friends and family, and not feel supported. This is a huge fear and struggle for so many people. A huge lifestyle change like moving into an RV is a great way to lose friends.
Using Brooke’s advice and stories, you can make the transition to RV life hopefully with a few less tears and broken relationships.
Growing Up Roadschooled by Kelsey Henry
For moms or teenagers looking to make that jump into RV life, but also wondering if they will ever have a “normal” life because they live in a roaming home.
Am I going to roadschool Ellie? I have no idea (which is what I say to all the people who keep asking me!).
But I do have a good idea of what roadschooling is like after reading my friend Kelsey’s book.
In this book, Kelsey looks back on what it was like being roadschooled from age 12-17. How she tried homeschooling and the ever-interesting “unschooling” and even graduated early—all while adventuring the country with her parents and chasing her dream of becoming a musician. There are so many questions and fears for kids and parents when it comes to taking a kid’s education on the road and Kelsey shows exactly what life looked like for her and how it’s transformed her into the person she is today.
Garrison’s in Wonderland by Becky Garrison
For retirees or soon-to-be retired full-timers.
With her light sense of humor and a healthy amount of realism, Becky shares exactly what her first year of RV life was like. All the expensive mistakes. All the gorgeous campsites (and how much they cost). All the beautiful adventures. It felt like I was riding along with her as I read her short stories.
Reading like a travel journal, this book is particularly helpful if you’re trying to plan your travels and in the middle of figuring out where you should go, what time of year you should be there, and how to enjoy your days as a retiree.
Also as an honorable mention for books for retirees, Secrets of RVing on Social Security is supposed to be a great one! I haven’t read it. For hopefully obvious reasons.
Ellie Dwyer’s Great Escape (novel)
For anyone who hates nonfiction books.
A few years ago, I told my friend Kelsey that I was going to write a novel about her becoming an RVer (yep the same Kelsey from above) because there are no good novels about full-time RVing.
BUT I FOUND ONE.
I actually thought it was going to a biography, but turned out to be a delightful little novel with some great RV insights sprinkled in. The main character Ellie (okay fine the name Ellie is what really drew me to this book!!) is semi-retired and living out of her car after a hurricane wrecks her home. While she’s camping in the back of her car, she quickly becomes interested and maybe a tad jealous at all these people happily camping in their RVs where they have stoves and heaters and real beds.
(This is how I feel any time we end up boondocking next to tenters. I feel like I need to offer them a cup of coffee in the morning.)
This easy weekend read is short and sweet (and the first book in a series, if you get hooked). In addition to sharing Ellie’s transition into RV life, there a few great insights for newbie RVers too.
If nonfiction isn’t your thing, this is definitely the best fiction book on RV life that I’ve come across.
A Beginner’s Guide to Living in an RV by Alyssa Padgett
For anyone who is worried about figuring out the logistics behind living in an RV.
With 600 5-star reviews, I have to include our book as one of the top books for RVers.
Living in an RV is going to cover all that nitty, gritty, how does an RV actually work stuff that is totally intimidating when you buy your first rig. (Plus I updated the book for 2020 earlier this year, so all the content is up-to-date!) It’s designed to help you figure out all the boring parts of RVing—how to get internet, set up mail service, tow a car, and so on—so that you can hit the road and start adventuring.
The ebook is on sale for $.99 all week 🙂
Live Camp Work by Sharee Collier
For anyone interested in workamping (AKA where you camp somewhere “free” in exchange for working at that business, most often at campgrounds and RV parks).
Most of our RVing friends have tried workamping at some point. We’ve even negotiated camping for free at campgrounds as part of our contract for filming videos. It can be a great way to save money or stay in awesome places for extended periods of time, like national parks.
In this book, Sharee shares what workamping is, how to find jobs, and 1000+ employers you can contact for workamping gigs. This is a great resource for anyone starting full-time life, but needs to save a little extra money each month by saving on camping fees.
Tales From the Open Road by Joe Russo
For a glimpse of life once you’re on the road.
The second in Joe Russo’s series, this is Joe’s memoir on what life on the road is like. (Take Risks was the first!)
If you’ve followed We’re the Russo’s on Youtube at all, this book is a great behind the scenes look at the ups and downs of RV life and the reality behind what life is like on the road. I think this is one of the few books that doesn’t focus on the whole ins and outs of transitioning to RV life and talks about more about the lifestyle itself.
Living the RV Life by Julie and Marc Bennett
I haven’t actually read this one yet because I read on a Kindle paperwhite and this is more of a coffee table book than an ebook. AKA it has lots and lots of pictures and colorful formatting, which are great for showing off RV life, and not so great on a tiny black and white screen. (But I still LOVE my Kindle and have used it for five years now!)
This book is great for literally showing you the lifestyle, with profiles of fellow RVers, tons of photos, and lots of information about RVing. Would make a great gift for any friends who are considering RV life, but need a little inspiration.
A Kitten’s Quest by Cees & Madison Hofman (recommended by Ellie)
An adorable and gorgeously illustrated kid’s book about a kitten convincing his parents to buy an RV and visit our nation’s most beautiful national parks. AND it’s based on the true story of that time our friends Cees & Madison decided to visit all of the national parks with their beloved cat, Vladimir.
Well, mostly true. I’m pretty sure the adventure wasn’t the cat’s idea.
These are some of the top RVing books I’ve found this year, but if you’ve got more, send them to me! There’s nothing cool fall evenings are better for than curling up on the couch with a good book.
Looking for more books to read? Here are some of our other book lists: