Staff Review: “Walk on Earth a Stranger” by Rae Carson

Posted on Thursday, January 14, 2016 by Kelsey Simon

Walk on Earth a StrangerWhy I Checked It Out: “Walk on Earth a Stranger” is by Rae Carson! That’s why! I mean, I loved her “Fire and Thorn” series, so that was really the only reason I needed to put this on hold and excitedly wait for its release.

What It’s About: I didn’t know the book was a historical fantasy until I got it in my hands and started reading. It’s set during the great California gold rush, and follows Lee Westfall, a young girl with the ability to magically sense gold. Can you already see the complications that might cause? A gold rush and a girl who can sense gold? The book focuses on her struggle to cross the country and keep her secret safe.

What I liked About It: It’s a very unique idea. It’s not a knock-off, or a combination of two different stories already published. It is fresh and different. It also covers a historical time period that YA books have yet to really focus on.

Besides that, Rae Carson is an amazing writer and Lee Westfall is a great character who is easy to love. Overall the book was a bumpy, suspenseful wagon ride across the country.

What I didn’t Like About It: Although original, “Walk on Earth a Stranger” was a little expected. Once Lee sets off for California, you kind of knew what was going to happen. People were going to die while they crossed the country from the expected Oregon trail traveling blunders– wagon train attacks, starvation, and illness.

After a point, some parts of the long journey across the country dragged. I did get to a point where I was like, “Can’t we just get to California already!?” That aside, I still had no trouble reading it in a couple weeks, and not once did I even consider putting it back on the shelf. I would still highly recommend it.

Similar Titles: If you haven’t read Rae Carson’s other trilogy yet, I would highly suggest checking out the first book in the series, “The Girl of Fire and Thorns.” While more fantasy than “Walk on Earth a Stranger,” it is still a great read!

For some other historical fantasy reads, check out Libba Bray’s “A Great and Terrible Beauty,” set in the Victorian era or “Grave Mercy” by Robin LaFevers which takes place during the Middle Ages.

And remember, “Walk on Earth a Stranger” is the first in a trilogy, with the next book coming out sometime next year.