The Daughter's Walk is a departure from some of the homesteader romance beat the odds type of books, even for Jane Kirkpatrick. There isn't a girl longing for a husband, or a wife supporting her man. There are a cast of strong and courageous female characters doing what they could to get by in a day that didn't value the skills or input of women. Money seems to be key. This could be a quote from today, "My life had been defined by money; working for enough of it, saving for college, then using it instead for family needs". The book has the theme of earning, losing, earning spending, earning losing. Story of my life as well. (Quote from page 103). The story also has alot to do with writing. The value of writing down your story. The guilt and shame you might receive from relatives, the expectations of others - and really claiming the joy of writing. I like it when the character reflects - "It's easer to write than to speak about how I feel." I identify with that with my blogging! Towards the end of the book, Jane weaves us through the later years of the character's lives - she shared a poem, I think by Tagore? "I slept and dreamt that life was a joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I served and understood that service was joy." I see this quote pertaining to moms - even though the character is not a mom. When we learn to love the service, the passion of the work - Joy comes!
I will have to report Jane Kirkpatrick is my favorite author. I feel connection though our towns, as I was on the Vollyball team coached by one of her friends way back in the day, and then we both share a love for Central Oregon, my living in Bend. However, this was the hardest book to get into. The book is about the walk of a daughter and mother team, but the walk came so quickly, it was hard to know who the characters were - to identify with what they were doing. But the book had to go to the final pages, and your journey reading it, will be time well spent, as their story comes full circle.
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