Author: Diane Les Becquets
Winter in the backwoods of Colorado is no joke and no one knows this better than the rangers who patrol those snow-covered expanses. Pru is one of these, a Bureau of Land Management archeological law enforcement ranger with the only certified search-and-rescue dog in the county, and as such, is called out when a bow-hunter named Amy-Raye mysteriously disappears on the last day of a hunting expedition.
So begins Breaking Wild, the story of two women, very much alike though they lead very different lives. Diane Les Becquets alternates masterfully between the perspectives of Pru and Amy-Raye, drawing the reader seamlessly through past and present. Her prose is incredibly vivid and you will feel every whisper of icy wind, every bated breath, every visceral tug of fear. (I think it’s safe to assume this is drawn from her personal experience living and working in the Centennial State.) This is a story about people as much as it’s a wilderness thriller, and Les Becquets brings the fascinating parallels of her strong, independent main characters to life. Both spent their childhoods wrapped up in the outdoors. Both are mothers. Both are morning people. But both have an abiding darkness in their pasts that will chase them into the depths of winter.
Downside(s): Hardly a deal-breaker, but the climax seemed just a little too drawn out, and I found myself skimming in a subconcious attempt to pick up the pace.
Recommended for: parents of outdoor dogs, fans of Cheryl Strayed’s Wild, and anyone who likes a good winter walk in the woods (or likes the sound of one at this point in August).
Takeaway: “It’s like our missing person is two people. Makes me wonder which one we’ve been looking for.”
Dive deeper: Ever wondered what you’re supposed to do if you get lost in the outdoors? Check out this helpful guide from the U.S. Forest Service.
“Adventure Read of the Month” is a series showcasing great adventures in book form. Any sponsored reads will be noted as such, but all reviews are my honest opinion. If you have a book you’d like to see featured here, let me know at er4schen(at)gmail(dot)com.