Following an almost fatal car accident, Lende introduces us to the community that helped her get back on her feet: the eccentric, fiercely independent, always fascinating residents of Haines, Alaska—Buddhists, bear hunters, Tinglit Indians, and her large, lively family. We join Lende as she attends her small Episcopal church, cares for her mother, wonders how to forgive the driver who hit her and how not to faint with joy as she finally walks down to the beach for her daughter’s wedding. By the time we reach a certain age, most of us have been hit by trucks, in one way or another, and Lende shows us that our responses to those setbacks have everything to do with faith.
Praise for the book:
“Lende writes emotionally but never sentimentally, giving us the best Alaska memoir of late, maybe the best ever.” —Booklist (starred review)
“Lende has a knack for subtly illuminating the remarkable in the commonplace, the transcendence in tragedy . . . Her voice, which alternates between folksy and formal, playful and prayerful, entertaining and elegiac, is reminiscent of Garrison Keillor, Krista Tippett, Tom Bodett, Kathleen Norris and Anne Lamott.” —Minneapolis Star Tribune
“The book is full of vivid characters . . . [Lende] has a simple, chatty style most readers will find oddly comforting. Life does, in fact, go on.” —Los Angeles Times
“Here is the real thing — good old-fashioned American values coming from small-town Alaska.” —The Boston Globe