Travels with Maurice

An Outrageous Adventure in Europe in 1968

Non-Fiction - Memoir
220 Pages
Reviewed on 04/10/2022
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Author Biography

Gary Grew Up in Lincoln, R.I., a Blue-Collar town. Gary went to Babson University School of Business and graduated with a BSBA in 1966. He worked his way around The USA for 6 months. A year later, Gary traveled with the son of the richest man in the world, covering 19,988 miles, 12 countries, and 10 weeks.
Gary went to work at Broadway Tire Inc. and, 20 years later, bought the business.
Gary worked there for 50 years before retiring in 2016! He met and married his wife Ronna and had two beautiful children. Now he has 5 grandchildren! His love of travel remained with him, and he's been fortunate enough to have visited 75 Countries, each in a unique style all his own, using much of which he learned in my travels with Maurice in 1968.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Joe Wisinski for Readers' Favorite

Travels with Maurice: An Outrageous Adventure in Europe in 1968 tells the story of an average American man who traveled with the son of the richest man in the world at the time. Author Gary L. Orleck was a self-described “nobody” who drove almost 20,000 miles through 12 European countries in less than three months with his friend and companion Maurice. Along the way, they met kings and queens and partied with some of the most famous people in the world. Orleck experienced the power of what money and connections can do. As an example, when he wanted to call his father from France he was told it would take four to six hours for the call to go through. But Maurice intervened and within 30 seconds Orleck was talking to his father. The book is replete with many similar anecdotes.

Travels with Maurice: An Outrageous Adventure in Europe in 1968 is a fascinating book. I was hooked from the first page, although I won’t say what happened, as that would spoil the introduction. Gary L. Orleck is a fine writer who tells tale after tale of incidents that might be hard to believe if not for the captivating detail with which he writes, along with his obvious nostalgia. As Orleck himself said, “no one could make this story up.” Readers will quickly fall under Orleck’s spell and develop great affection, and yes, envy, for him and his friend Maurice as they experience their incredible journey through Europe. I highly recommend this wonderful story to anyone.

Amy's Bookshelf Reviews

Sparked Memories!

What a grand title in Travels with Maurice An Outrageous Adventure In Europe In 1968 by Gary Orleck. I haven't read work from this author before, and I enjoyed this story. The prologue sets the tone for what sparked the story. The story is narrated in first person and revolves around adventures with Maurice. A dear friend to the narrator, the author, probably best friend. A chance encounter with Maurice, who refers to Gary as Garree, brings on the adventure. "I could see his mind working for a moment before he responded. 'Garree, let's say that we each take three thousand dollars with us and when one of us goes broke, we'll both come back home." This story is about the life that Gary led, and each time he and Maurice would meet, it was always interesting, and sometimes dangerous. I enjoyed reading Gary's story, as well as Maurice's story, because one adventure changed their lives. It's a lifetime of stories, and very enjoyable. Travels With Maurice an Outrageous In Europe In 1968 is a definite recommendation by Amy's Bookshelf Reviews. I look forward to reading more stories by this author.

Roz K

I really enjoyed this book! It reads like historical fiction, but it's true! What an amazing summer! I felt as if I was with Gary and Maurice traveling around Europe as they talked their way into one adventure after another. I highly recommend Travels with Maurice. It would be a great summer read!

Michael Berman

‘Travels With Maurice’ is a gem of a book that just sneaks up on you with its greatness. While the title makes you think it’s a travelogue or roadtrip book (and we’ve all read enough of these), ‘Travels’  isso much more.

The story begins with a toast in a bar to the news that an old friend has died, you are quickly drawn into the world of Gary Orleck, who did a simple favor for Maurice, a fellow student at Babson College and then found his life changed in a way that he could have never foreseen. Soon, this son of a tire businessman found himself driving through Europe in the height of the 60’s with the son of an Iranian billionaire in a bright red Mustang. Coming from a world of limitations and “no’s”, Gary found the doors unlocked, the curtains drawn back and in the company of the rich, famous and artists from exclusive music venues in London, clubs in the south of France with exclusive underground dance rooms, dancing with Bridgette Bardot, dining with the Shah of Iran and in the midst of military tensions during the Cold War.

So ‘Travels With Maurice’ is a travelogue or a roadtrip book, right? 

And that is where the magic of this book lies. It is the lifelong friendship, the lessons learned and the change of attitude towards Gary’s  life itself that makes this book an incredible read. While Maurice, as the son of a rich man could have easily skated through Europe and his life on his family’s money, he was incredibly aware of the people around him, their hopes, their dreams and tried to make their interaction with him, however brief, meaningful and memorable. Sure, Travels has its share of women, parties, 60’s music stars and well, exactly what you might expect from two young American men driving a sports car with a copious amount of money, but the treasure of this book is in the way these two young men changed each other for the better.

The book gives you  choice. You can read it as an incredible, funny and heartwarming roadtrip book. You can let yourself be immersed  in this world the author, Gary, got to experience in a once-in-a-lifetime, but you will be doing yourself a disservice. The richness of this personal story will find you savoring every page, from the toast that opens it to the story of these two men’s lives long after their time together in Europe.

This is not a simple book. It is an invitation by Gary to the reader to go on a journey with him that isn’t measured in miles driven, but in years of life that he has finally been able to put down on pages that you simply wont be able to stop turning.