Author: Rae Carson
Genre: Young Adult // Historical // Adventure
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Publication Date: September 22, 2015
Source: Publisher (Edelweiss)
The first book in a new trilogy from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Rae Carson. A young woman with the magical ability to sense the presence of gold must flee her home, taking her on a sweeping and dangerous journey across Gold Rush–era America.
Lee Westfall has a secret. She can sense the presence of gold in the world around her. Veins deep beneath the earth, pebbles in the river, nuggets dug up from the forest floor. The buzz of gold means warmth and life and home—until everything is ripped away by a man who wants to control her. Left with nothing, Lee disguises herself as a boy and takes to the trail across the country. Gold was discovered in California, and where else could such a magical girl find herself, find safety? Rae Carson, author of the acclaimed Girl of Fire and Thorns trilogy, dazzles with this new fantasy that subverts both our own history and familiar fantasy tropes.
Walk on Earth a Stranger, the first book in this new trilogy, introduces—as only Rae Carson can—a strong heroine, a perilous road, a fantastical twist, and a slow-burning romance. Includes a map and author’s note on historical research (goodreads).
Walk on Earth a Stranger was the western adventure I never knew I needed!
Plot: Leah Westfall can sniff out gold like my cat can sniff out treats. This unusual skill has helped her family stay above the poverty line but has also brought unnecessary attention to them. A tragic incident forces Leah to go west to follow her best friend Jefferson to California
because God decreed it.
Leah is one of the most badass female characters of the Old West. She knows that by being a woman, she's a target for every highwayman along the trail, so what does she do? She disguises herself as a man and joins a company.
Much like The Girl of Fire and Thorns, Walk on Earth a Stranger is an adventure. We start from Georgia and end in California, and quite a lot can happen on that dusty trail.
Characters: It's astounding how I can become attached to characters on pages; I feel like I've gone through so much with Lee and her company, even though I was an outside observer. I held my breath at danger, I cried at loss, and I smiled during celebrations. I lived this trail with Lee and her company.
For those who need romance in their novels, be aware that that Walk on Earth a Stranger is very romance-lite which is a-okay with me. The best friend and potential love interest, Jefferson, is a great character by himself and I feel that we've only seen the tip of the iceberg of what makes Jefferson tick.
World Building: Carson's writing and world have won me over completely. As I've only read fantasy from this author, I didn't know what to expect in her writing historical fiction, but let me tell you; Carson has completely captured the feel of 19th century America perfectly. My tongue was dry and my bones were tired from a hard day's journey and I was in my bedroom!
Short N Sweet: Walk on Earth a Stranger is a strong start to what I expect to be a fast-paced adventure-filled series!