The Crossway is a very honest and open travelogue written about Stagg’s pilgrimage from Canterbury to Jerusalem on foot.
Despite the word pilgrimage, Stagg is a non-believer and the book is not specifically focused on religion, instead the journey that Stagg embarks upon is in response to a nervous breakdown and suicide attempt at the age of 23.
As a first step Stagg set out from London to Canterbury - a well-known pilgrimage route. It was this journey that he realised something beneficial had happened, it wasn’t an epiphany but just the inkling of something positive. From here we head on to Rome, Albania, Macedonia, Greece, Turkey and finally, Jerusalem.
The book takes us through the journey, we meet the strangers who offer shelter after long days of walking and we learn more about the mental challenge and emotional state of Stagg as he makes progress along the route.
This is an honest take on the journey both physically and mentally and an enlightening read for backpackers, gap years and anyone looking for how travel can impact and benefit mental health.