Thursday, April 11, 2013

Book Review: North of Hope: A Daughter's Arctic Journey by Shannon Huffman Polson

North of Hope:  A Daughter's Arctic Journey

by:  Shannon Huffman Polson

About the Book:
"After her parents are killed in a rare grizzly attack, the author is forced into a wilderness of grief. Turning to loves she learned from her father, Polson explores the perilous terrain of grief through music, the natural world, and her faith. Her travels take her from the suburbs of Seattle to the concert hall where she sings Mozart's Requiem, and ultimately into the wilderness of Alaska's remote Arctic and of her heart. 
This deeply moving narrative is shot through with the human search for meaning in the face of tragedy. Polson's deep appreciation for the untamed and remote wilderness of the Alaskan Arctic moves her story effortlessly between adventure, natural history, and sacred pilgrimage, as much an internal journey as a literal one. Readers who appreciate music or adventure narratives and the natural world or who are looking for new ways to understand loss will find guidance, solace, and a companionable voice in this extraordinary debut."

My Review:
The journey of grief is different for each person and this is Shannon Huffman Polson's journey.  The death of her father and step-mother in a bear attack in a remote part of Alaska left her with questions and the need for answers.  So a year later she decides she needs to retrace their path and the final days and moments of their lives.  Their journey becomes her journey and with the help of her fathers journal she and her estranged brother and his girlfriend take the same white water rafting trip that they took and thus begins an adventure in the wilderness that leads to a ending that is overpoweringly healing and insightful.  Polson writing is so eloquent and descriptive and contains raw honesty.  This isn't just about that journey but all the aspects of her life including her faith and her career. This is a great book and a story not soon forgotten.  

*I received this book compliments of Handlebar Publishing for purposes of this review, however all opinions are my own.

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