In May 2007, leaving China’s Great Wall is Car 84, one of 128 antique autos racing in the Peking to Paris Motor Challenge. It’s guided by one Dina Bennett, the world’s least likely navigator: a daydreamer prone to carsickness, riddled with self-doubt, and married to a thrill-seeking perfectionist who is half-human, half-racecar. What could possibly go wrong?
Funny, self-deprecating, and marred by only a few acts of great fortitude, Peking to Paris is first and foremost a voyage of transformation. The reader is swept on a wild, emotional ride, with romance and adversity, torment and triumph. Starting in Beijing, Dina and her husband, Bernard, limp across the Gobi, Siberia, Baltic States, and south to Paris in a 1940 Cadillac LaSalle, while Dina nurses the absurd hope that she can turn herself into a person of courage and patience.
Writing for every woman who’s ever doubted herself and any man who’s wondered what the woman traveling with him is thinking, Dina brings the reader with her as she deftly sidesteps rock-throwing Mongolians and locks horns with Russians left over from the Interpol era—not to mention getting a sandstorm facial and racing rabbits on a curvy country road. Come along for the ride with a dashboard diva!
Dina Bennett was born in Manhattan. After five years as a PR executive, she joined her husband’s software localization company as senior VP of sales and marketing. The two worked side by side until they sold the firm in 1998 and abandoned corporate life for a hay and cattle ranch. Since then she has untangled herself from barbed wire just long enough to get into even worse trouble in old cars on over 100,000 miles of far-off roads. She is the author of Peking to Paris, and she resides in France.