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There are many staple travel books to have on your shelf if you live in Los Angeles. There's 60 Hikes within 60 Miles for the outdoor adventure inclined. For those who want to stay a little closer to home, Erin Mahoney's Walking LA is a fun one (related, Mahoney owns Chill Out LA, a spa, beauty, yoga and pilates site and e-mail newsletter, which just relaunched with a new design last month). And today, from the Editor of the well put together travel narrative, My California: Journeys by Great Writers, comes Great Escapes: Southern California.

The book is divided into five sections: surf, summits, sand, sidewalks and splashes. "Within two hours’ drive, just about any landscape or adventure or culture you can imagine is, quite literally, in reach — if you take a bit of time to explore," author Donna Wares wrote in an e-mail about the book. And in the tradition of My California, she says "you'll find passages from California writers such as T. Jefferson Parker, Judith Freeman, Pico Iyer, and Robert Smaus talking about their favorite spots."

In January, Wares wrote an LA Times article sampling some of her adventures and got interactive with it by including a Google Map. In fact, as any good travel writer should do, Wares has started blogging about travel in Southern California.