Two Christmases ago I drew my oldest brother’s name for our sibling gift exchange. He had two items on his wish list, one of which was this book. I can’t not give a book when a book is an option, but when I looked into this one, my heart swelled a little bit, because Alaska…
Edges of the Earth: A Man, A Woman, A Child in the Alaskan Wilderness
by Richard Leo
Synopsis According to Mandi:
Without spoilers, Edges of the Earth is Richard Leo’s re-telling of his homesteading experience in the Alaskan wilderness. Sick of the wind-and-grind of his career and the hustle-and-bustle of the city, Rick convinces his girlfriend, Melissa, to journey with him from New York to the Last Frontier. Settling first in Talkeetna, the two and, eventually, their baby boy, Janus, learn the Alaskan ways before venturing into the wilderness, building their homestead, chasing dreams, and putting their relationship to the ultimate test.
“We’re here. Just look where we are. The world is rich beyond imagining, still. Remember how we used to joke that there might not be anywhere left to go, everything known, everything already described? Remember how bleak life seemed when all hope was blown away by the intimation of inevitable tragedy – lost love or winnowed possibility or obtuse human righteousness? I remember! But look. Here is only light and land, as anywhere. But such light! And the land presupposes nothing except its continuity. I haven’t escaped sorrow, not even here, of course, not even on an unnamed creek in the boreal forest. But there’s so much life. Still. “– Richard Leo, Edges of the Earth
Awards (based upon my brief research):
My Overall Rating:
4 – Rick’s story is incredibly interesting, and I love his complete honesty the whole way through. Between what he chose to share and how he shared it, he made my heart alternately swell and ache. Though I was surprised by how his relationship with his girlfriend, Melissa, played out, I was captivated by his friendship with Alexander and the storyline there, and I was impressed by his relationship with his son, Janus.
For someone who both longed for and felt comfortable with such isolation, it’s obvious he still so highly valued relationships and human interaction. The homesteading side of his story was adventurous and lust-worthy. The relational side of his story was special yet common.
I can’t recommend this book to everyone, but if you like adventure, Alaska, or even just examining relationships through everyday hardships, this is a great read. If you love Alaska, it’s a must read.