Book Review: The Color of the Wild

I can remember only a handful of Freshly Pressed blog posts that have moved me to the point of first, reading the entire post and second, clicking “Follow” at the top of the page. Gin Getz’s post was an easy decision, so easy. I have followed her blogging journey for at least a year now.

She is separate from the pack offering her followers, stunning photographs, thoughtful words, and generous story-telling. All, of which is, wrapped up and beautifully executed in each post. I can’t skim her writings, they are not meant to gulp down like a tall glass of water on a hot day. I have realized this is just Gin’s writing and living way. What a treat, an author who honestly makes you slow down, think, ponder, wonder, dream, cry, right along with her words. I find myself wanting to sip each phrase with the same savory thoughtfulness I give to a gorgeous glass of red wine or tea on a winter’s day. She effortlessly makes you dive deep into her words.

She recently published her first book “The Color of the Wild” (she just completed the manuscript for her third) and asked her blog followers if any of us would read and review her book prior to its release. I jumped at the chance, I knew it would be good.

What I didn’t know was how much it would impact me. This book is rare gem. First of all it’s structure is unique. Each chapter is a month, starting with January and ending in December, a journey through 12 months. Now, this is where it gets interesting, there are short stories, essays, poems, photographs all in each month, they don’t necessarily have anything in common except the month or season they take place in. So, you weave through her life in her own words, spanning at least 20 years, through difficult life lessons, self triumphs, stubborn adventures, love and heartache. Somehow it works, even though you are reading works from many times and circumstances. They all find their way together, I was never lost, wondering where she was going with a particular story, I never needed to go back to a previous page and find my way back. It works, seamlessly.

There are a few common story lines that find their way into several of the months/chapters. I can tell you when I started the December chapter I was really sad. Sad to know this was it, the end was near. There is such wisdom and hope, strength and courage, rawness and heartache all there for you, the reader, to take in, feel the goosebumps and be wiser on the other end.

Much of the book revolves around Gin’s connection to nature, especially the incredible expanse she, her husband and son, along with many animals, call home. They live and work high in the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, near the headwaters of the Rio Grande River.  Almost six months of the year the road to their property is impassable unless they snowmobile out, which they rarely do. There is a true ebb and flow to this kind of life. The isolation, hard work, freezing cold, views in winter only their eyes see. Then in the summer months the valley swells with tourists, ATV’s and sunshine. In this book Gin is saying goodbye to the mountains, this land, needing to tend to her horses and herself at a more life friendly elevation. You can easily feel her angst in leaving and yet relief at the possibilities.

Gin gives the reader a tremendous view, emotional and physical, into what it is really like living in the wilderness, the silence, connecting to the natural world around you. All on a level you would only understand if you have had the privilege to live that way, do the work, hunker down in the cold, feed off the isolation, embrace what is. Having spent a several years living in Fairbanks, AK during my 20’s so much of this book and her deep-rooted relationship with such a place resonated with me. I also appreciated the unspoken, comforting, closeness her family shares in such tight quarters. All giving each other their space and yet so connected, tight.

I have taken away a lot of insight and inspiration from her book. It is worth reading, diving into, escaping, uncovering something maybe you lost but, most of all, it is worth your time to read.

Gin has been more than gracious in her correspondence with me since she published this book. I am so grateful for our budding friendship and wish her nothing but great success with this book and those soon to come. When I asked if I could review her book on my blog she was kind enough to say yes, even though, then, I only had 5 followers on this blog. I promised her I would wait until I passed 75  followers and was quick to say, I had no idea how long that would take. She said, when the time was right, it was right.

She is a grassroots, focused, woman (I say she is a woman who runs with wolves) with a beautiful piece of work, a timeless story that will wake up your soul. Please pass this review along to all who would support her work. Or better yet, pick up the book for yourself and write a review of your own. Our words are powerful, pass them on.

You can follow Gin’s work, photographs, daily routine, raw words HERE

You can buy a book of your own HERE  available in kindle and paperback format

Enjoy the adventure.

5 comments

  1. You are most gracious. Thank you for taking the time for this, Carrie. And congratulations on your rapid growth and here’s to continued success!
    With much gratitude,
    Gin

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