Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska


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Is it the perfect book? No, but those are few and far between.


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Love the areas of Homer and Seldovia although things have changed in the last 30 years. I would definitely recommend reading the book. When I was through reading this book I almost felt like I had finished two books. The first pages of this review copy recount the author's arrival and early years in Alaska. At the start of the book the author was living in NH with her husband Gary. The first actual date mention in the book was the Exxon Valdez spill of After the Valdez incident, the book for the remaining 25 pages chronicles Janice and Ed's involvement in the Alaskan land trust movement.

I was much more interested in the story of their adaptation to living in Alaska, and was impressed by their resourcefulness and ability to adapt to a climate and living conditions very different from even their NH background. The subject of Janice's interest and research into foraging for wild edible foodstuffs was a major topic in this book. A Google search shows she has written several well received reference books on the subject. Overall I enjoyed the book, and would recommend it to anyone with an interest in the challenges of trying to live a self sufficient lifestyle anywhere, and particularly to anyone with an interest in living in Alaska.

I really did not care for the author's style of writing. Too much unnecessary "purple prose" I also felt I never really got to know Janice and Ed very well. There were several loose ends - for example one winter they decide they need a break from the cold and went to New Zealand. On an impulse, they bought property there. There was never any mention after that of New Zealand or traveling out in other winters.

A little better editing would have made this a much better book. The author lives an interesting life and can put together interesting stories. The book is a series of stories rather than a coherent narrative. Jan left her husband for Ed, got married, hopped in Ed's green van and moved to the Alaskan bush. Ed and Jan didn't give it all up to live in the Alaskan bush. They didn't have much in New Hampshire. The longer they stayed in Alaska, the more creature comforts they acquired. They have many interesting adventures and meet many characters along the way.

Characters in many ways, as you might expect in the Alaskan wilderness. Unfortunately, the author makes the characters seem robotic. She uses forced conversations to carry the narrative. It seems clear that most of the book was written many years after the events took place.

I don't know why she tries to recreate the conversations that took place. They come across as very flat, artificial and two-dimensional. For me, that ruined the book. I was willing to accept the narrative flaws and loose ends. After all, the book was meant to be autobiographical. Life has narrative flaws and loose ends. Jan insists on filling the narrative with these artificial conversations. The best parts of the book are those where Jan is more of a spectator than a participant.

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As she tells in the introduction, she is uncomfortable writing about herself. When talking to Ed, "I hate writing when we are central characters. In the interest of disclosure, the publisher sent me a free copy with hopes that I would review it. See all 15 reviews. Most recent customer reviews. Published on January 3, Published on September 25, Published on May 24, Published on September 10, Published on September 3, Published on August 14, Published on August 2, Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.

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Beyond Road's End: Living Free in Alaska

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Amazon Music Stream millions of songs. Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon. Alexa Actionable Analytics for the Web. AmazonGlobal Ship Orders Internationally. Amazon Inspire Digital Educational Resources. Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go. Cha The author lives an interesting life and can put together interesting stories.

Characters in many ways, as you might expect in the Alaskan wilderness. Unfortunately, the author makes the characters seem robotic. She uses forced conversations to carry the narrative. It seems clear that most of the book was written many years after the events took place. They come across as very flat, artificial and two-dimensional. For me, that ruined the book. I was willing to accept the narrative flaws and loose ends.


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After all, the book was meant to be autobiographical. Life has narrative flaws and loose ends. Jan insists on filling the narrative with these artificial conversations. The best parts of the book are those where Jan is more of a spectator than a participant. As she tells in the introduction, she is uncomfortable writing about herself. In the interest of disclosure, the publisher sent me a free copy with hopes that I would review it. Jul 22, Jaylia3 rated it liked it. This book, especially the beginning of it, was gripping.

Reading it gave me the vicarious thrill of chucking modern conventions and conveniences to reinvent my life in several gorgeous-sounding Alaskan wilderness areas. Building my own cabin, foraging for food, hiking miles across wildflower-covered fields surrounded by snow-capped mountains--I've done it all. I mean I've read about it all.

Beyond Road's End Living Free in Alaska

My only quibble--and this detracted from my experience enough that I gave the book 3 stars i This book, especially the beginning of it, was gripping. My only quibble--and this detracted from my experience enough that I gave the book 3 stars instead of was the author's writing style, in particular her use of what had to be made-up dialog, usually between herself and her husband, to move the story along and give the reader background information.

Using dialog like this has the effect of shutting us out of her heart and mind, keeping the story on the surface level and the reader at arms length. I'm grateful she shared the details of her adventure, but Schofield doesn't reveal as much as I would like of what she was thinking and feeling during it all.


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  6. Jun 23, Annette rated it liked it Shelves: Beyond Road's End is the memoir of a young woman that begins in New Hampshire as she abandons a dead-end marriage and work career to gamble on a new life with Ed. Shortly thereafter Ed and Janice sell out and head to Alaska seeking adventure, freedom, and fulfillment.

    Beyond Road's End: Living Free in Alaska by Janice Schofield Eaton

    In a short few years, their story encompasses overcoming adversity, building a homestead, and increasing involvement in conservation efforts for Alaskan land following the devastation of the Exxon Valdez oil spill. The author als Beyond Road's End is the memoir of a young woman that begins in New Hampshire as she abandons a dead-end marriage and work career to gamble on a new life with Ed.

    The author also provides details on her development as a writer specializing on wild plants. This Alaskan segment and the book of her life ends with Ed's death from cancer and her subsequent move to another life stage in New Zealand. This is a good read for someone interested learning about living and homesteading in Alaska in the Eighties and the story of a couple's resourcefulness and perseverance. Jul 10, Lyn rated it liked it Shelves: Most of this book was very interesting, but parts of it dragged on for me.

    It seemed like her memory of some events was quite foggy, but for some reason she felt like it had to be included in the story. At times the conversation felt artificial, but then, maybe Ed was a ma Reading about a couple who left a New England life to explore Alaska and New Zealand ,interesting At times the conversation felt artificial, but then, maybe Ed was a man of few words. While the conversation might feel fake, the adventure was real. The last part of their story about the Land Trust and the Valdez oil spill was especially interesting.

    Aug 02, Tracy Thiede rated it it was ok. I won this book through the Goodreads Giveaway program. I love reading about Alaska and was really looking forward to reading this story about two people who sell everything they have and take off for Alaska, living off the land and faith. I was greatly disappointed.

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    It felt like reading someones journal and they left out a lot of detail which left me with a lot of questions. If you are interested in plants and natural healing or you were a part of the 70's thing you may appreciate this book.

    Aug 22, Joe rated it it was amazing. Living the dream of tossing everything and moving to Alaska! The book details their struggles and triumphs. I alway enjoy a story with a good dog in it and Maxwell was one of the best. Having just returned from Alaska many of the places mentioned were familiar to me. The part of the story of the oil spill is amazing.

    Editorial Reviews

    Exxon had a presence when there were cameras but the locals did the brunt of the work. Read this book and go see Alaska. Feb 28, Rogue Reader rated it it was ok Shelves: Self conscious writing and self indulgent lifestyle. Terri rated it liked it Jun 25, Graphic Arts Center Pub. Aug 22, Christy rated it really liked it. I want her life! Julie rated it it was ok Jan 31, Robin Edwards rated it really liked it Aug 31, Sara rated it really liked it Apr 07, Brad Jaeger rated it it was amazing Jul 14, Linda Sexauer rated it liked it Jul 14, Jane rated it liked it Aug 06, David Durr rated it it was amazing May 24, Julie marked it as to-read Jun 01, Leah marked it as to-read Jun 29, Poppy marked it as to-read Jun 29, Jennifer Defoy marked it as to-read Jun 30, Jo marked it as to-read Jul 01, Trisha marked it as to-read Jul 07, Barbara marked it as to-read Jul 08, Dolly marked it as to-read Jul 09, Sarah marked it as to-read Jul 12, Katie marked it as to-read Jul 17, Wendy marked it as to-read Jul 27, Leah marked it as to-read Oct 22, Carrie Pirmann added it Jan 14, Megan marked it as to-read Mar 02, Dovofthegalilee marked it as to-read Jun 14, Danielle marked it as to-read Aug 03, Karan marked it as to-read Jan 20,

    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska
    Beyond Roads End: Living Free in Alaska

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