The Daughter’s Walk by Jane Kirkpatrick – Book Review


Title of Book: The Daughter’s Walk  ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥

Author: Jane Kirkpatrick

My favorite quotes from book:

  • It’s not possible to work out every detail in life, but one has to be bold.
  • Bored? No. Not ever. Only uncreative people are bored.
  • In dreams, words fail to express the heart, but the soul knows of the longing.
  • Occupy until I come, scripture tells us. Multiply is what that word occupy means. Here is our chance to do that, to save this farm, and all it requires is using what God gave us, our feet and our perseverance, our effort and a little inconvenience.

Year Published:  WaterBrook Press (April 5, 2011)

Pages: 400

Genres: Historical Fiction

Characters in book: Clara Estby, Helga Estby, Hannah Estby, Forest Stapleton, The Rutters, Martin Siverson, Chauncey Depew, Olea Stone Ammundsen, Louise Gubner, Franklin Dore, & John Dore.

In 1896 Norwegian American Helga Estby accepted a wager from the fashion industry to walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City within seven months in an effort to earn $10,000. Bringing along her nineteen year-old daughter Clara, the two made their way on the 3500-mile trek by following the railroad tracks and motivated by the money they needed to save the family farm. After returning home to the Estby farm more than a year later, Clara chose to walk on alone by leaving the family and changing her name. Her decisions initiated a more than 20-year separation from the only life she had known.

Historical fiction writer Jane Kirkpatrick picks up where the fact of the Estbys’ walk leaves off to explore Clara's continued journey. What motivated Clara to take such a risk in an era when many women struggled with the issues of rights and independence? And what personal revelations brought Clara to the end of her lonely road? The Daughter's Walk weaves personal history and fiction together to invite readers to consider their own journeys and family separations, to help determine what exile and forgiveness are truly about.

“Kirkpatrick has done impeccable homework, and what she recreates and what she imagines are wonderfully seamless. Readers see the times, the motives, the relationships that produce a chain of decisions and actions, all rendered with understatement. Kirkpatrick is a master at using fiction to illuminate history’s truths. This beautiful and compelling work of historical fiction deserves the widest possible audience.”
Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)


My Overview: In 1896 Clara Estby and her mother Helga, decide to walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City to save the family farm from foreclosure! The two women set out on a socially forbidden & morally unacceptable journey! They will discover during their journey that many trials, heartaches and disappointments await them. Promised by the fashion industry $10,000 to advertise the new reform dresses, Clara and Helga wear the dresses as they make their journey across the states! Everyday they come one step closer to  anticipating & claiming their prize. However, tragedy strikes when Clara sprains her ankle and they end up two weeks late! Now the fashion industry refuses to pay them their prize money! Clara suddenly realizes that they made the trip for nothing & is regretting the fact that she even came.

What an incredible story about a Mother & daughter who share each other's heartaches and disappointments as they take this walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City. Clara secretly desires for her father to call the whole thing off and when he doesn't Clara decides to honor her mother's wishes and go with her. As they take this journey they encounter the persecution of having taken on a difficult task and the betrayal of those that they love the most.

As the two women take their journey they discover who they really are and just what they are capable of accomplishing! Both Clara and her mother discover secrets about one another. They share in the heartache of disappointing others & failure to achieve their dreams & goals. Each day they are faced with the challenge of finding work, enjoying a meal and finding a place to sleep! Clara and Helga keep going in hopes of finding what they are both looking for.

My Thoughts & Comments: Jane Kirkpatrick brought life & liberty to each of the characters in this book. She used real life facts known about these women and then gave their characters permission to come alive in the reader's mind. Its been awhile since I read any historical fiction, but this book I truly enjoyed. I let my imagination drift back to a time when it wasn't acceptable for women to do such a things! I allowed myself to take the journey across the unknown territory! What it must of been like for these woman to carry a burden that they had to succeed or lose their family farm! Thank you Jane Kirkpatrick for sharing with us a story of heartache & adventure! A story about two women who discover whom they are and whom God has created them to be! I truly enjoyed it and I'm sure others will too! 

Read an excerpt from book here!












Note: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for a review. This review only reflects my personal opinions that were formed by reading this book.

My key for review ratings


God's Heart Your Destiny