Book lovers traveling on US I-84 between NYC and Boston will want to take a brief detour just before the Connecticut-Massachusetts border. Leave the Interstate at exit 74 and make a beeline for the humble Traveler Food and Books Restaurant in tiny Union, CT.
The little wood-paneled, bookshelf-lined diner has been dishing out all-American road food for three decades, but the real travel treat is the prospect of free books. The original owner, Martin Doyle, started giving away his personal library to customers and began a tradition that has been continued by the current proprietors.
Restaurant owners Art and Karen Murdoch estimate that Traveler Food and Books has shared more than two million books over the years. They manage to maintain the free book policy with donated books, library cast-offs and book sale purchases .
Be prepared to linger over that second cup of joe and a slice of homemade pie while you choose you free title.