I write about the intersection of travel and spirituality.

Lori’s New Book

The Soul of the Family Tree:

Ancestors, Stories, and the Spirits We Inherit

Amazon; WJK Books; Audible; Study Guide


Publishers Weekly: “Erickson details how researching her Norwegian American heritage led to deep personal reflection. . . With a light hand, Erickson invites readers to follow her lead and take some liberties in the search for one’s ‘spiritual DNA.’ … Readers may find themselves ordering their own DNA testing kit upon finishing this.”

Foreword Reviews: “With her trademark combination of memoir and pilgrimage tale, Erickson alternates between writing a historical study and recording experiential learning. . . The Soul of the Family Tree posits that a spiritual grounding in one’s family history can combat ‘historical amnesia’ and nurture a sense of belonging.”

Cedar Rapids Gazette: “In this radiant new book, [Erickson] brings a light heart, an old soul and a deep understanding to her subject of how tracing our genealogy can deepen our spiritual lives.”

Little Village: “”Erickson welcomes us aboard a literary longboat, dragon heads fore and aft, and sets sail on a genealogical and spiritual pilgrimage to explore all things Nordic, past and present. . . [The Soul of the Family Tree] is carefully researched and informative, concisely expressed, lighthearted in tone and woven together with humor like fine, handmade Scandinavian linen.”


Two-part Interview on NPR’s Travel with Rick Steves: The Soul of the Family Tree (begins at 13:25) and Nordic Roots (begins at 1:19).

Interview on the Frommer’s Travel Show: Lori Erickson on genealogical travel

Interview on Iowa Public Radio’s Talk of Iowa: What genealogy and a ‘boring hobby’ can teach us about ourselves

Excerpt in the Toronto Star: Tracing my ancestral roots, I travelled to the only authenticated Viking site in North America

Interview on Extreme Genes: America’s Family History Show: Vikings, the Web of Wyrd, and The Soul of the Family Tree (segment starts at 10:45)

Podcast with Kenyatta Berry of PBS program Genealogy Roadshow: Genealogy as pilgrimage

Family Tree Magazine Podcast: Genealogy and Spirituality

Cedar Rapids Gazette: Lori Erickson finds ancestral spirits

Daily Iowan: Erickson combines her personal heritage with Scandinavian lore and culture

Places I Remember With Lea Lane Podcast: Deep Travels

Episcopal Journal: Author researches family history

Viking Magazine: New Nordic Read Delves into Heritage

Viking Tracks: Genealogy Can Deepen Our Spiritual Lives

Daily Iowan: Ask the Author

Previous Books:

Near the Exit

“This book’s journey to spiritual places near and far is worth taking.” Library Journal (starred review)

Holy Rover

“Whether describing mystical visions or the rhythms of everyday life, Erickson turns the spiritual journey into a series of exciting transformations.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)

From a childhood on an Iowa farm, Lori Erickson grew up to become one of America’s top travel writers specializing in spiritual journeys. When she’s not on the road, she lives in Iowa City, Iowa.