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Next Stop, Reloville: Life Inside America's New Rootless Professional Class

Next Stop, Reloville: Life Inside America's New Rootless Professional Class Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

An eye-opening investigation of the growing phenomenon of "Relos," the professionals for whom relocation is a way of life

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

Peter T. Kilborn was a reporter for The New York Times for thirty years, having covered business, economics, social issues, and the workplace. He was also one of the contributors to the Timess award-winning series and book Class Matters. Kilborn is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford and holds a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.   

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"Peter T. Kilborns Next Stop Reloville documents an important piece of social history: the lives of relocating corporate executives. These modern-day ­nomads—overwhelming white, well-educated and middle-class—maintain the business machine of large companies. They include the technicians, marketing executives and professional managers who accept a rootless life in exchange for handsome remuneration . . . A fair and well-written chronicle."—Joel Kotkin, The Wall Street Journal

"We've all seen one: a sprawling subdivision lined with McMansions, each eerily similar to the next and outfitted with the perfectly manicured lawn and neutral paint job that the neighborhood association requires. In Next Stop, Reloville, Peter T. Kilborn examines these communities, often inhabited by 'relos,' his name for affluent, midlevel executives who frequently relocate themselves and their families for the chance to climb the corporate ladder. Kilborn estimates that there are 10 million such people in the United States. Most fascinating is the way Kilborn shows how the 'relo' way of life negatively affects their communities. Since 'relos' don't plan to stay long, they are less inclined to get involved in charitable or civic causes. But their influence on real estate is profound: They drive up home prices because they can't be bothered with bargaining, and their employers usually kick in money for the move. As they trek from state to state or even country to country, Kilborn writes, 'they create an insular, portable, and parallel culture with little-recognized but real implications for American society at large.' Kilborn focuses on a few specific families, including one set of parents who missed their daughter's senior year of high school when she stayed behind to finish with her friends after they moved out of state. He interviews many women who yearn for a female best friend, which they struggle to find when uprooted every two or three years. Kilborn writes, 'Relos don't have accents. Wherever they go, they don't belong. Their kids don't know where they are from. Relos don't know where their funerals will be or who might come.' For these modern-day nomads, their lifestyle takes an extraordinary emotional toll."—Sarah Halzack, The Washington Post

"Next Stop, Reloville is an extraordinary account of people who can't stay put, who sacrifice community and friendship and stability and roots for the next promotion, the next raise, the next move, which they believe takes them one step closer to the top."—The Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

"Kilborn spent four years investigating 'Relos'—corporate executives and managers who move every few years—and the 'Relovilles' where they tend to settle, near major airports and concentrations of corporate headquarters and branches. For Next Stop, Reloville: Life Inside America's New Rootless Professional Class, Kilborn used census and other data to arrive at America's Top 25 Relovilles . . . Forbes.com swiftly repackaged Kilborn's list as 'America's Best 25 Places to Move.' But in his book, Kilborn offers a mixed view of Relos and the "golden ghettos" where they live . . . The author credits Relos with caring hugely about public schools and youth soccer leagues. But because they may well be moving on soon, they tend not to give to local fundraising campaigns, join civic clubs, serve on church vestries, or run for local offices . . . Real estate agent Kim Daugherty says Kilborn is right that Relos want good schools and newer homes that don't have to be 'rehabbed.' But the contention that many want a house just like their last one strikes her as off-base."—Sam Hodges, The Dallas Morning News

"Kilborn, longtime writer for The New York Times, takes on the subject of Relos, America's growing number of professionals who continually relocate for their careers . . . The book's final chapter tracks a handful of UNL graduates and their experiences in Relo culture . . . Kilborn is a good storyteller, and these accounts of Nebraskans trying to leave behind all they know will be heartachingly familiar to any Midwesterner."—Micah Mertes, The Journal Star

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"A fascinating account of a new type of transient worker in America, affluent in their material lives but impoverished in their community ties. With detailed personal stories, Peter Kilborn shows how their temporary jobs and temporary homes shape their marriage, childrearing, and community mores."—Stephanie Coontz, author of Marriage, A History: How Love Conquered Marriage

"Next Stop, Reloville is massively researched and well digested, but more than this, it interprets a phenomenon that not only goes to the heart of the American Dream but to the heart of human identity. The couples and shakers profiled, from Alpharetta, Georgia, to Castle Rock, Colorado, are in a kind of driven fog. They are each wondering, Who am I, and how did I get on this everlasting treadmill? In this sympathetic and arresting portrait of Americas corporate gypsies, Kilborn takes the Willy Lomans of the present age and weeps for them."—Rev. Paul F. M. Zahl, author of Grace in Practice: A Theology of Everyday Life

"A solid update on the American rat race . . . [Kilborn] clearly evokes the rootlessness of [Relo] lives, with fathers often on the road; mothers at a loss without intimate female friends and struggling to integrate themselves and their children into new communities; and everyone anxious about when the next transfer will come."—Kirkus Reviews

"A skillful storyteller, Kilborn captures the costs and loneliness of the relo lifestyle."—Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Journalist Kilborn expands on his 2005 New York Times profile of the 'relos,' rootless, upper-middle-class, mid-level executives, 'an affluent, hard-striving class' who follow the money 'as they migrate through the suburbs of Atlanta and Dallas and the expatriate villages of Beijing and Bombay.' Kilborn explores 'relovilles' like West Plano and Flower Mound, Tex., examining their curious, portable and insular culture, surveying the ad hoc 'relo economy' that aids the perpetually transient relos. A skillful storyteller, Kilborn captures the costs and loneliness of the relo lifestyle without judging his subjects' choices. Kilborn began research for this book in 2005, when many large corporations responsible for relocating the relos were in such different economic circumstances; as a result, his story feels unfinished. He notes that the national free fall in housing prices has made relos less mobile and that some upper management positions have been eliminated, but fails to mention what kind of effect the economic downturn has had on his subjects' tendency toward conspicuous consumption and what will happen to the ghost towns and ghost strip malls they leave behind as they begin to curb their spending. Photos. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Book News Annotation:

Kilborn, a former writer for The New York Times for 30 years, profiles the lives and social influences of corporate managers who have transformed modern ideas of suburbia by constantly relocating in the name of professional success. The author describes the impact of these "Relos" on major American cities and their suburbs by documenting shifts in real estate brokerages, city planners and management recruiters. General readers will appreciate the insights into such noted "relo" companies as UPS, and practitioners in the social sciences will be interested in the feelings of isolation and insecurity that often emerge in "trailing" spouses and children. Annotation ©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

From a "New York Times" reporter comes an eye-opening investigation into the growing phenomenon of "relos"--the mid-level executives whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success.

Synopsis:

An eye-opening investigation of the growing phenomenon of Relos, the professionals for whom relocation is a way of life

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and you'll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents' suburbia, the little houses made of ticky-tacky--these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans--no matter their jobs or the economy's booms and busts--will call Relovilles home.

Synopsis:

An eye-opening investigation of the growing phenomenon of "Relos," the professionals for whom relocation is a way of life

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

Peter T. Kilborn was a reporter for The New York Times for thirty years, having covered business, economics, social issues, and the workplace. He was also one of the contributors to the Timess award-winning series and book Class Matters. Kilborn is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford and holds a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.   

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"A fascinating account of a new type of transient worker in America, affluent in their material lives but impoverished in their community ties. With detailed personal stories, Peter Kilborn shows how their temporary jobs and temporary homes shape their marriage, childrearing, and community mores."—Stephanie Coontz, author of Marriage, A History: How Love Conquered Marriage

"Next Stop, Reloville is massively researched and well digested, but more than this, it interprets a phenomenon that not only goes to the heart of the American Dream but to the heart of human identity. The couples and shakers profiled, from Alpharetta, Georgia, to Castle Rock, Colorado, are in a kind of driven fog. They are each wondering, Who am I, and how did I get on this everlasting treadmill? In this sympathetic and arresting portrait of Americas corporate gypsies, Kilborn takes the Willy Lomans of the present age and weeps for them."—Rev. Paul F. M. Zahl, author of Grace in Practice: A Theology of Everyday Life

"A solid update on the American rat race . . . [Kilborn] clearly evokes the rootlessness of [Relo] lives, with fathers often on the road; mothers at a loss without intimate female friends and struggling to integrate themselves and their children into new communities; and everyone anxious about when the next transfer will come."—Kirkus Reviews

"A skillful storyteller, Kilborn captures the costs and loneliness of the relo lifestyle."—Publishers Weekly

About the Author

Peter T. Kilborn was a reporter for The New York Times for thirty years, having covered business, economics, social issues, and the workplace. He was also one of the contributors to the Timess award-winning series and book Class Matters. Kilborn is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, holds a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University, and was a Professional Journalism Fellow at Stanford University. Starting out in Rhode Island, he became a Relo himself with stints in Paris, New York, Los Angeles, London, Miami, and Washington. He and his wife Susan live in Maryland.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780805083088
Subtitle:
Life Inside America's New Rootless Professional Class
Publisher:
Times Books
Author:
Kilborn, Peter T.
Subject:
SOC050000
Subject:
Sociology - General
Subject:
Moving, Household
Subject:
Professional employees
Subject:
Social classes
Subject:
Relocation (Housing) -- United States.
Subject:
Home -- United States.
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20090707
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
10 bandw photos
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » American Studies » 80s to Present
History and Social Science » American Studies » General

Next Stop, Reloville: Life Inside America's New Rootless Professional Class
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Product details 272 pages Times Books - English 9780805083088 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Journalist Kilborn expands on his 2005 New York Times profile of the 'relos,' rootless, upper-middle-class, mid-level executives, 'an affluent, hard-striving class' who follow the money 'as they migrate through the suburbs of Atlanta and Dallas and the expatriate villages of Beijing and Bombay.' Kilborn explores 'relovilles' like West Plano and Flower Mound, Tex., examining their curious, portable and insular culture, surveying the ad hoc 'relo economy' that aids the perpetually transient relos. A skillful storyteller, Kilborn captures the costs and loneliness of the relo lifestyle without judging his subjects' choices. Kilborn began research for this book in 2005, when many large corporations responsible for relocating the relos were in such different economic circumstances; as a result, his story feels unfinished. He notes that the national free fall in housing prices has made relos less mobile and that some upper management positions have been eliminated, but fails to mention what kind of effect the economic downturn has had on his subjects' tendency toward conspicuous consumption and what will happen to the ghost towns and ghost strip malls they leave behind as they begin to curb their spending. Photos. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , From a "New York Times" reporter comes an eye-opening investigation into the growing phenomenon of "relos"--the mid-level executives whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success.
"Synopsis" by , An eye-opening investigation of the growing phenomenon of Relos, the professionals for whom relocation is a way of life

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and you'll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents' suburbia, the little houses made of ticky-tacky--these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans--no matter their jobs or the economy's booms and busts--will call Relovilles home.

"Synopsis" by ,

An eye-opening investigation of the growing phenomenon of "Relos," the professionals for whom relocation is a way of life

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

Peter T. Kilborn was a reporter for The New York Times for thirty years, having covered business, economics, social issues, and the workplace. He was also one of the contributors to the Timess award-winning series and book Class Matters. Kilborn is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford and holds a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University.

Drive through the newest subdivisions of Atlanta, Dallas, or Denver, and youll notice an unusual similarity in the layout of the houses, the models of the cars, the pastimes of the stay-at-home moms. But this is not your grandparents suburbia, "the little houses made of ticky-tacky"—these houses go for half a million dollars and up, and no one stays longer than three or four years. You have entered the land of Relos, the mid-level executives for a growing number of American companies, whose livelihoods depend on their willingness to uproot their families in pursuit of professional success. Together they constitute a new social class, well-off but insecure, well traveled but insular.   

Peter T. Kilborn, a longtime reporter for The New York Times, takes us inside the lives of American Relos, showing how their distinctive pressures and values affect not only their own families and communities but also the country as a whole. As Relo culture becomes the norm for these workers, more and more Americans—no matter their jobs or the economys booms and busts—will call Relovilles "home."

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"Writing in the tradition of William Whytes The Organization Man and Robert and Helen Lynds Middletown, Peter Kilborn has produced an insightful study of an aspect of American life that is at once familiar and startling. Next Stop, Reloville combines first-rate storytelling and sharp analysis into a book that is a must-read for anyone interested in what makes this country—and its many restless workers—tick."—Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind and Free Agent Nation

"A fascinating account of a new type of transient worker in America, affluent in their material lives but impoverished in their community ties. With detailed personal stories, Peter Kilborn shows how their temporary jobs and temporary homes shape their marriage, childrearing, and community mores."—Stephanie Coontz, author of Marriage, A History: How Love Conquered Marriage

"Next Stop, Reloville is massively researched and well digested, but more than this, it interprets a phenomenon that not only goes to the heart of the American Dream but to the heart of human identity. The couples and shakers profiled, from Alpharetta, Georgia, to Castle Rock, Colorado, are in a kind of driven fog. They are each wondering, Who am I, and how did I get on this everlasting treadmill? In this sympathetic and arresting portrait of Americas corporate gypsies, Kilborn takes the Willy Lomans of the present age and weeps for them."—Rev. Paul F. M. Zahl, author of Grace in Practice: A Theology of Everyday Life

"A solid update on the American rat race . . . [Kilborn] clearly evokes the rootlessness of [Relo] lives, with fathers often on the road; mothers at a loss without intimate female friends and struggling to integrate themselves and their children into new communities; and everyone anxious about when the next transfer will come."—Kirkus Reviews

"A skillful storyteller, Kilborn captures the costs and loneliness of the relo lifestyle."—Publishers Weekly

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