Saturday, September 7, 2013

Review: Barefoot Sisters Southbound

Barefoot Sisters Southbound
Barefoot Sisters Southbound by Lucy Letcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Memoir/Autobiography
Reading Level: Adult (language, adult situations)
Recommended for: Those interested in hiking and hiking culture, memoirs, great stories

My Thoughts: This book is frequently quite hilarious, especially the bits about the Extreme Hiking Maneuvers, the squirrels, and Mr. Shaw's driving, just to name a few. I was initially interested in it because of the hiking barefoot thing; I have always loved to go barefoot, and when I was a kid, by the end of summer I'd have feet like a hobbit from running around on scoria (a type of volcanic rock that is very sharp that we use to gravel the roads in eastern Montana). When I went to university in Fargo, ND, I was frequently found running around campus barefoot in the fall, until eventually the university put up signs forbidding people to come into the buildings barefoot, which annoyed me greatly. The thing about better feeling the world through your feet is really true.

This is quite a long book. My Kindle doesn't keep track of pages, but it estimated my reading time (and it's good at that) at about 11 hours. I'm not sure how it was I found this book, and I'm doubly happy I managed to snag a free copy, because it's now about $12, but I have to tell you, it's really worth the price, a really outstanding story, and now I want the sequel, Walking Home, to hear about their adventures returning from Georgia back to Maine.

There are a lot of important ideas running through this book, mostly about the importance of taking care of one another. I'm sure that not all hikers are as wonderful as they are portrayed in this book, but it does seem that the danger of the hike seems to bring out the best in people, encouraging people to work together for the greater good. The stories of all the generous people that help the hikers along the way were heartwarming. This was just an amazing book, and an amazing story, and I'm so happy I managed to grab a copy. I highly recommend this to all my friends who enjoy a really good story. I find my words are completely inadequate to express my joy in having read this amazing book, so I hope these poor attempts will encourage you to check this book out. Highly recommended.

Disclosure: I picked up this book on Amazon during a free promotion. I have never, to my knowledge, interacted with the authors, nor was a review requested. All opinions are my own.

Series Information: Barefoot Sisters
Book 1: Southbound
Book 2: Walking Home

Synopsis: At the ages of twenty-five and twenty-one, Lucy and Susan Letcher set out to accomplish what thousands of people attempt each year: thru-hike the entire 2,175 miles of the Appalachian Trail. The difference between them and the others? They decided to hike the trail barefoot. Quickly earning themselves the moniker of the Barefoot Sisters, the two begin their journey at Mount Katahdin and spend eight months making their way to Springer Mountain in Georgia. As they hike, they write about their adventures through the 100-mile Wilderness, the rocky terrain of Pennsylvania, and snowfall in the Great Smoky Mountains—a story filled with humor and determination. It's as close as one can get to hiking the Appalachian Trail without strapping on a pack.

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