Gin Getz has authored another book, her second in a year. Her first book “The Color of the Wild” was published about 7 months ago. I have followed Gin’s blog for a couple of years now, when she published her first book I was one of the lucky volunteers to get to review her book. I wrote reviews on websites and I asked, hesitantly, if I could write a review of her book on my blog. Gin was more than supportive of me writing a review, although at that time I only had about 20 followers. I waited to review her first book until I had 75 followers, I wanted her work read by as many eyes as I could offer her. I am so proud that there are over 200 of you now, her words are worth reading.
Her first book is successful from what I gather from her, she is humble. I know her second book, published just 4 months after the first, is very dear to her soul. I don’t know many authors who publish their first book and then publish a second right on the coat tails of the first. But, that is just Gin’s way, there are no rules, just feelings and when the words are ready to share, she does.
While her first book was a beautiful memoir offering so much of what makes Gin tick, her second book goes so much deeper into her soul. For some reason, maybe it’s the honesty with which she writes, but I can’t get enough of her words. This second book jumps right in towards the land she calls home and how it is crying for help.
I do think, to fully understand her plight and suffering while watching her land die around her from bark beetle infestation and then burning uncontrollably for weeks, you must first read “The Color of the Wild”. She selflessly shares her intimate connection to this land through out the pages of her book while tenderly planting the seeds of her life story.
Her second book, “The Last of the Living Blue”, brings you back to where Gin and her family call home. Sadly, their land is greatly challenged by our warming climate. Where Gin once looked out the kitchen window at brilliant, healthy, greenish-blue spruce trees, now she sees dying needles and slipping bark. Acre after acre of beautiful trees rusting away with nothing to do except watch and grieve their loss.
There is a parallel story that unfolds as the book moves along, her son growing up and leaving the nest (or super small, rustic, one room cabin in their case). As much as she writes of her hard nose, tough, opinionated self (her words, not mine), she has such a gentle heart. She is a good mother and loves and respects the gift of motherhood. I really admire her for her understanding of her sons own journey and gently holding herself in her mothering transition. A mother’s strong heart is a beautiful thing.
Like I said, this book is deeper, in the grief, loss and love of her land and more. Her voice is strong, her soul in unrest, her mothering journey at a crossroads, so much change. Incredibly, she finds a purpose with the loss and decides to build a home out of the fallen, scorched, beetle eaten timber. The work to get the logs to their resting place could only be done by folks like Gin and her family. With pure will and grit, during the winter months when the river is frozen over, they pull, hoist and gather the logs for their home. It is an impressive venture so many would talk themselves out of.
I came away from reading this book with a deeper sense of Gin’s heart, a respect for her mother to mother, a longing to go and visit her lands and my eyes wide open to all the little sad signs around me. My natural world is also crying out, yearning for me to sit still, listen and catch her tears. If you are someone who finds a connection with our natural world, and is shaken by her weakened state, this book will give you hope and strength to do something about what you see. If nothing else, acknowledging that you see it, is a powerful start.
To purchase Gin’s book “The Last of the Living Blue” go HERE.
To Follow Gin’s blog, a beautiful collection of photographs, poetry and daily life in the Rockies go HERE