Susan Harlan is Associate Professor of English at Wake Forest University, USA. She is the author of Memories of War in Early Modern England (2016). Her writing has appeared in publications including the Guardian, the Awl, the Bitter Southerner, Jezebel, and Atlas Obscura.
In this short, delicious little extended essay, author Susan Harlan takes a closer look at our luggage, why we have it, why we use it as we do ... Brisk writing threads pensive musings about our luggage with the author's use of her own on one of her many business trips. What we choose to take, which bags and what to pack, their shape and size and appearance and more, all have a lot to say about who we are. Who knew a few bags could have such deep psychological implications? Five stars. * San Francisco Book Review * Susan Harlan writes with empathy and erudition about the things we lug, haul, pack, and leave behind. This little book - compact enough to throw in your carry-on for your next flight - is edifying and entertaining in equal measures. I loved it. * Rosie Schaap, author of Drinking With Men * For those of us who travel for a living, luggage is all things in one: tool, companion, talisman. I think about luggage a lot. Probably too much. But I've never read anything that - forgive me here - unpacks the history and meaning of luggage with the same depth and verve as Susan Harlan does. From Shakespeare's Henry V to an oddly compelling contemporary visit to Alabama's Unclaimed Baggage Center, this slim volume is worth the journey. * Nathan Thornburgh, Co-founder of Roads & Kingdoms *