Look Up, Maryland! Walking Tours of 25 Towns in the Free State, by Doug Gelbert. The book contains 35 individual walking tours preceded by the author's commentary, printed in simple style conducive to walking and reading. Being a fan of Maryland small towns - and a fan of walking, books like this are invaluable to me.
Having a copy in the car makes for a handy reference when I happen to find myself in one of these places. I'm not always able to locate a "walking tour" brochure or stop into a visitor center. Here, walking tours for 25 towns are all grouped in to one convenient book.
The book mirrors the style of walking tour brochures with numbered stops offering a bit of text covering architectural style and some history. Street addresses are printed at the start of each listing so identifying a property is easy. Photos are slim, but if you are scoping out the tour before or after you've actually visited the town and want pictures, photo images of each listing can be found on a Flickr site which the author notes in the beginning of the book. There is also a primer in the back that assists with identifying American architecture.
There are no maps included, but author points out that maps become quickly outdated and many people have GPS systems built right into their phones. He recommends printing out online maps as needed, and gives the verbal directions of "turn right here.. and follow to the corner and go left" where necessary within each tour.
Each tour begins with the author's commentary on that particular town or part of a city. There are four towns from Western Maryland - Frederick, Hagarstown, Frostburg, and Cumberland - eleven towns on the Eastern Shore - Berlin, Snow Hill, Pocomoke City, Princess Anne, Salisbury, Vienna, East New Market, Cambridge, Easton, Chestertown, and Elkton - and nine towns / cities in Central Maryland including Washington DC, Baltimore, Hyattsville, Laurel, Rockville, Annapolis, Havre de Grace, Westminister, and Ellicott City.
The author broke Washington DC down into seven different tours - Capitol Distirct, Downtown, Du Pont Circle, Federal Triangle, Georgetown, Lafayette Square and the National Mall. A visitor could spend a week in Washington and with this guide, see a good bit of it on foot, leisurely soaking up the history and architecture in one of the most "walkable" cities in the world. Baltimore tours consume 36 pages broken into five tours - Downtown East, West, Inner Harbor, Mount Royal and Mount Vernon. The commentary on Baltimore covers lots of ethnic history and the evolution of the city.
I love the author's recommendation on how to use this book ..."Consider tearing out the pages from this book when you take a tour - the book is created so that each tour can be pulled out without impugning another tour. You may find it easier to tour with just a few foldable pages in your hand than holding an entire book."