I was unaware who Emma Gatewood was until Women Who Dared by Skeers (my first review here). I like that I can tie in a picture book to those couple of pages. Emma “Grandma” Gatewood was 67 and decided “Why not hike the Appalachian Trail?” And because of this, not only did she have personal adventures, but made the public aware of trail in a way they did not know before.
My favorite page is when she gets to the Vermont part of the trail. (I am outing myself, I am from there. Yes, I am a proud Woodchuck!) There are maps, amazing illustrations and facts galore on each page. The afterwards is filled with even more facts. The text is for the younger reader (ages 5 to young 10) but adults should enjoy, too. This is an introduction to a woman that just was herself. She did not go out to make change. She went for a nice walk. A very long walk, but none-the-less, a walk to see if she could.
I meet a friend (now lost touch with) because of the trail. He walked into the store I work at and asked the person at the counter for an application because A) we had a great science fiction section and B) he needed a job. Therefore, I have a little love in my heart for the trail. And seeing someone hike it before all the modern technology (phones, good hiking equipment, etc.) is so eye opening. She hiked in sneakers held together by tape. She carried very little with her, she slept out in the elements and mice. She made friends along the way. It made me look into are there another books about her. I found two others. One out of stock right now and the other another picture book. This is one of the great things about picture books, you get a glimpse and hopefully want more.
You do not like hiking? Fine. Read it anyway. This book is truly for everyone.