Jonathan Raban is a British travel writer and novelist. He has received several awards, such as the National Book Critics Circle Award, The Royal Society of Literature’s Heinemann Award, the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award, the PEN West Creative Nonfiction Award, the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award, and a 1997 Washington State Governor’s Writer’s Award. Since 1990 he has lived with his daughter in Seattle. Though he is primarily regarded as a travel writer, Mr. Raban often blends the story of a journey with rich discussion of the history of the water through which he travels and the land around it. Even as he maintains a dispassionate and often unforgiving stance toward the people he meets on his travels, he does not shirk from sharing his own perceived foibles and failings with the reader.