Sunday, April 5, 2020

Children's Book: Grandma Gatewood Hikes the Appalachian Trail

Grandma Gatewood Hikes the Appalachian TrailEmma Gatewood’s life was far from easy. In rural Ohio, she managed a household of 11 kids alongside a less-than-supportive husband. One day, at age 67, she decided to go for a nice long walk . . . and ended up completing the Appalachian Trail.

With just the clothes on her back and a pair of thin canvas sneakers on her feet, Grandma Gatewood hiked up ridges and down ravines. She braved angry storms and witnessed breathtaking sunrises. When things got particularly tough, she relied on the kindness of strangers or sheer luck to get her through the night. When the newspapers got wind of her amazing adventure, the whole country cheered her on to the end of her trek, which came just a few months after she set out. A story of true grit and girl power at any age, Grandma Gatewood proves that no peak is insurmountable.

My Thoughts: I love hiking. Being out in nature has always relaxed me and it helps me un-clutter my mind. With the order of "Stay at Home," I am trying to find alternative ways to nurture my nature side. One way to do so is by reading books about hiking. My library had this children's book on Grandma Gatewood available through Overdrive, so I gave it a go.

Before reading this book, I've never heard of Emma "Grandma" Gatewood. I was stunned to learn that she was a real person. Reading about how a 67-year-old woman hiked the Appalachian Trail on her own was very inspiring. What was even more inspiring was that she did it 3 times! It put me to shame when thinking about how I start to complain after 3 hours of hiking. However, it gave me hope and encouragement to keep hiking into my old age. Of course I would not be doing it alone. It's best to travel with someone for safety.

The story telling was decent. It gave a few facts about Grandma Gatewood. My only complain about it was Grandma Gatewood's story was told in a choppy manner. Every so often the flow of the story would be broken by either a map or fact page. Don't get me wrong, these pages were interesting, but I would almost forget where the story left off because of the distraction.

But I have to say, the best part of this book were the illustrations! Each page was covered with gorgeous colors that popped with every turn of the page. They illustrated the beauty of nature and made the facts of Grandma Gatewood stand out. The maps were gorgeously put together that I could not help but admire every single detail.

To sum up, this was a charming children's book about the life of Grandma Gatewood. She was an inspiring woman and the illustrations were fantastic. This brief biography made me eager to learn more about her. I am looking forward to doing more research on Grandma Gatewood. I rate this:

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