Dri­ve-Thru Dreams: A Jour­ney Through the Heart of Amer­i­ca’s Fast-Food Kingdom

  • From the Publisher
January 1, 2013

Most any hon­est per­son can own up to har­bor­ing at least one fast-food guilty plea­sure. In Dri­ve-Thru Dreams, Adam Chan­dler explores the insep­a­ra­ble link between fast food and Amer­i­can life for the past cen­tu­ry. The dark under­bel­ly of the industry’s largest play­ers has long been scru­ti­nized and gut­ted, char­ac­ter­ized as imper­son­al, greedy, cor­po­rate, and worse. But, in unex­pect­ed ways, fast food is also deeply per­son­al and emblem­at­ic of a larg­er than life image of Amer­i­ca. With wit and nuance, Chan­dler reveals the com­plex­i­ties of this indus­try through heart­felt anec­dotes and fas­ci­nat­ing triv­ia, as well as inter­views with fans, exec­u­tives, and work­ers. He traces the indus­try from its roots in Wichi­ta, where White Cas­tle became the first fast food chain in 1921, and suc­cess­ful­ly brand­ed the ham­burg­er as the offi­cial all-Amer­i­can meal, to a teenager’s 2017 plea for a year’s sup­ply of Wendy’s chick­en nuggets which unit­ed the inter­net to gen­er­ate the most viral tweet of all time. Dri­ve-Thru Dreams by Adam Chan­dler tells an inti­mate and con­tem­po­rary sto­ry of Amer­i­ca — its hum­ble begin­ning, its inno­va­tions and fail­ures, its inter­na­tion­al charis­ma, and its region­al iden­ti­ties — through its beloved road­side fare.

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