Line One
In-cab Fever
All work, no play makes Jack a brain-dead workaholic
Truck driving is a job that can easily demand that 80 or 90 percent of your waking hours be working hours. Even when you’re off-duty, too often you’re on a short leash. Seeking a healthy balance while you are sitting for hours in your truck or in a truck stop isn’t easy, but we’ve got some ideas to stave off the “in cab fever.” Whether you need an entertaining escape or an intellectual retreat, we’ve got you covered.

‘Ultra-Custom Semi Trucks’

“What does it take to have a winning show truck?”

If I’ve been asked that question once, I’ve been asked it a million times. And it’s not just from competitors who fell short, but also from those who simply appreciate a great truck.

Thankfully, I have a new answer this year: Check out Bette S. Garber’s newest book, “Ultra-Custom Semi Trucks” from Motorbooks.

Bette knows more than a thing or two about show trucks and is also a talented writer and photographer. This book delivers an insider’s view into the world of show trucks as only Bette can.

Bette profiles everything from custom chrome shops to trucks with standout interior and exterior customization, from head-turning paint jobs to why truckers pick certain themes. My favorite was when an 8-year-old suggested the theme for “Pure Punishment.” I love it when kids are in on the action.

It’s not exactly a how-to-build-a-show-truck book, but anyone who thumbs through it will have a dang good idea by the time they hit the back cover.

– By Jami Jones, senior editor

Musical motivation for the road

Most people who have ever listened to ’80s rock ’n’ roll remember Def Leppard and the upbeat, hard-driving sound that made them a huge success. Their newest album, “Songs from the Sparkle Lounge,” exhibits a slightly modernized version of their original sound.

While this album will never reach the status of “Hysteria” (1987), it’s still an album that is enjoyable for those hard-rockin’, musically motivated road warriors like myself. If you liked “Adrenalize” (1992), you may like this album as well.

Country singer Tim McGraw – The “Indian Outlaw” himself – performs in the intro on the song “Nine Lives,” but isn’t heard anywhere else on the new album.

The album’s “must have” factor for loyal Def Leppard fans who are considering adding it to their collection would be a 3.5 out of 5 points.

– Jeff Barker, special to Land Line

LOL with Click and Clack

No problem is too ridiculous and no solution too absurd for the “Car Talk” guys Tom Magliozzi and Ray Magliozzi, better known as Click and Clack.

Their latest audiobook, “Car Talk Field Guide to the North American Wacko,” is billed as a “radio road trip across America” and features calls taken during their show on National Public Radio.

One man from Minnesota attempted to get his Chevy Cavalier home from Alaska with the help of a rusty barbecue grill. Then there’s the single guy who wonders if he should tidy up his vehicle for a first date or reveal his trashy side.

Tom and Ray are pretty wacky, but definitely have a gift for gab.

Published by HighBridge Audio, the unabridged run time is 3.5 hours.

– By Jonathan Lowe, audio book reviewer for Land Line, and