John McPhee’s Uncommon Carriers was an ok book, though hardly his best. He sets out trying to explore the livelihood of those that move stuff with big equipment — freighters, trains, semi drivers, barge captains, package handlers, and the like. And then, in the middle, he starts up this dumb summary of a canoe trip. It’s not a bad story, but it really doesn’t mesh with the spirit of the book, and instead is a bit of a literary travelogue. Cut it out and the book isn’t all bad, though the last little tie-it-up chapter where he revisits the semi driver is a bit dull as well. 6/10.