Author: Sonja Yoerg
Published: September 2015, NAL
Format: ARC Paperback, 336 pages
A troubled, young widow hikes from Yosemite Valley deep into the wilderness on the John Muir Trail to elude her shameful past in this emotionally gripping story from the author of House Broken.
With her thirtieth birthday looming, Liz Kroft is heading for the hills—literally. Her emotional baggage weighs her down more than her backpack, but a three-week trek promises the solitude she craves—at least until her boyfriend, Dante, decides to tag along. His broad moral streak makes the prospect of confessing her sins more difficult, but as much as she fears his judgment, she fears losing him more. Maybe.
They set off together alone under blue skies, but it’s not long before storms threaten and two strange brothers appear along the trail. Amid the jagged, towering peaks, Liz must decide whether to admit her mistakes and confront her fears, or face the trail, the brothers and her future alone.
My thoughts: I read Sonja Yoerg's debut novel, House Broken, earlier this year and so I was quite eager to get my hands on her latest book. I was fortunate to pick up a copy this past spring at BEA and couldn't wait to start reading it. Once I did, I had a hard time putting it down!
What I loved about this book is that even though I am definitely not a hiker, and after reading this book, I'm not sure I would even want to try it, I never once felt lost or confused about what Sonja was talking about. She was so detailed in her writing that I felt as if I was right there with Liz on the hike. I had a very clear picture in my mind about what it takes to go on this three-week trek, to set up camp each night, to be rained upon, etc. But, it wasn't just about a girl going on a hike. This book is so much more than that.
Liz is carrying some pretty big secrets and needs time to herself to figure things out. Her plan was to go this hike by herself, but at the last minute, her boyfriend, Dante, decides to go with her. She now has a captive audience where she can unburden some of her secrets that will affect Dante, but how will that impact their relationship? Both Liz and Dante have their flaws and that's what makes them more relatable characters. Liz is a tough cookie to crack - she's insecure and doesn't trust anyone, including herself. And because of her past, she definitely doesn't trust Dante's love for her.
During the hike, not only is the relationship between Liz and Dante tested, but their lives are put in danger time and again. They meet some menacing individuals who make things more complicated and the weather at times doesn't help. This really adds a sense of mystery and suspense, causing you to be glued to the pages, wanting to find out what is going to happen. At the same time, there's that sense of self-discovery going on for Liz and also for Dante in a sense. It's really hard not to get caught up in it all.
Sonja Yoerg has written another well-developed, page-turner of a story that really did have me on the edge of my seat, furiously turning pages until I reached the end. I'm not entirely sure I will be going on a hike anytime soon after reading what Liz and Dante endured, but it was a great story and I can't wait to see what comes next from Sonja!
GIVEAWAY DETAILS - (US only)
Thanks to the author, one reader can win a copy of The Middle of Somewhere by Sonja Yoerg. To enter the giveaway, please fill out the form by September 25th.
This giveaway is open to US residents only and ends September 25th.