Monday, May 23, 2011

The Daughter's Walk

The Daughter's Walk by Jane Kirkpatrick

Absolutely and totally fascinating!

In 1896 Helga Etsby accepted a wager from the fashion industry to walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City. Her prize: $10,000 for doing the walk within 7 months while wearing the new shorter hemline skirts. She brought her 18 year old daughter, Clara, along and the two of them start on a journey with the hope that they could save the family farm. That is where the story begins and by no means is it where it ends.

A non-fiction story written with fiction elements I found myself completely captivated. Let's be honest, who in their right mind thinks it's a good idea to walk 3500 miles especially in a time where much of the western US was still very much frontier. Crazy!  The story is told by Clara and you will find yourself loving her, hating her, angry with her, crying for her, and immersed with her.This is one of those books that while you want to turn the pages quickly to see what happens you also want to savor each word, paragraph, and moment.

When the two women return home from their walk everything has changed. Life takes an interesting twist and Clara sets out on her own. Just when I think I've read it all in the story world this woman decides to try her hand at trapping animals for fur. Kirkpatrick is a master storyteller and she weaves this tale with finesse. Rich with period history and research about the actual Etsby family and Clara herself this story will amaze you. Prepare to dive in and not come out until you put the book down. Believe me, it will be a trip worth taking!

WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group provided this book to me for free in exchange for this honest review as part of their Blogging for Books program.

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