[Download] ➵ If You Lived Here, I'd Know Your Name: News from Small-Town Alaska By Heather Lende – Dolove.info
If you ve ever wondered what it would be like to live in small town Alaska, this is the book for you When we first visited Alaska ten years ago, we were quite bitten with the bug to move there and even went so far as to start scouring the real estate ads for homes for sale in Homer This was in 2006, and the first thing we noticed were the large number of houses that were listed under foreclosure a forerunner of the recession to come around the world Now in the fall of 2016, I chose this book to read while taking a land tour sea cruise with Princess Cruises with my husband to celebrate our 40th anniversary 15 glorious days and it was the perfect choice as we visited many of the areas mentioned in this author s charming memoir Heather Lende moved to Alaska with her husband, Chip, and the first of their five children, and settled in Haines in 1984 Chip now owns a lumberyard and Heather writes for the local weekly newspaper, the Chilkat Valley News, composing the obituaries As the title implies, the town is small enough around 2000 people that everyone knows everyone and their business so that it feels like a close knit, extended family, caring for each other Because of her job, Heather confronts death frequently than the rest of us probably do and seems to have come to terms with its inevitably, but still not with complete acceptance She makes a point to go and talk to each bereaved family to learn a bit about their deceased loved one not just for the facts of their life to list in the obituary, but to try to get a feel for who they really were One thing I am coming away with after reading this book is the danger of living in such a wild, remote place, where Mother Nature reigns supreme and can be cruel and merciless, where reaching emergency medical care in time is dependent on the weather So the beauty and peace of living in a unspoiled location with breathtaking vistas and the freshest air imaginable must be weighed against the inherent risks At one young man s funeral, a case of drowning, Heather looked around the room and counted twelve families who had also lost a child to tragic accident How hard that must be for these families to endure All that promise snuffed out in the blink of an eye.So for me, Alaska will remain a wonderful place to visit but A bit too mundane but some interesting bits about life in small town Alaska The author is the obituary writer in the town, which led to the most interesting bits Dang I need to change my Kindle settings when I finished the book, my Kindle marked it as read in Goodreads and I never realized I hadn t written a review. I really enjoyed this book It was a nice, relaxing read for me I enjoyed Lende s writing style It was very soothing and like talking to an old friend I haven t seen in a while catching me up on what s happened since I saw her last Yes, it is full of death but not in a morbid way and no, it wasn t very exciting because most of the time life isn t Instead it was down to earth and genuine Well done Lende Well done. On vacation in Alaska, and visiting the tiny town of Haines, I realized some places are just kinder to their local authors In fact, maybe they re just kinder to everyone Haines is such a small town that everyone surely knows everyone else And every store that sells anything sells books by local authors, including Heather Lende s If you lived here, I d know your name After seeing that glorious moose gazing out from the cover often enough, I could no longer resist.Heather Lende is an essayist for National Public Radio She also knows how to clean and smoke fish, how to live off the land, and how to comfort families left behind after tragedy Besides writing the local paper s events column Duly Noted she writes obituaries, and in writing them gets to see beneath the surface of many local lives.Apparently Haines might be the model for Northern Exposure a TV series I loved long ago and would love to watch again Moose really might walk down the street, as might bears Snow and storms might cut communications, locking down boats and helicopters alike Children might be born without the aid of a hospital, and might survive Meanwhile insurance and almost everything else costs a fortune Life is simpler and easily lost in this place But simplicity takes away the veneer that hides complexity, and Heather Lende s quiet essays reveal a wealth of traditions, beliefs, relationships, religions and political persuasions, all bound together in community by the land.Sometimes, reading this, I wished I could live in Haines Sometimes I knew I d never cope But most of all I m glad to have had the chance to do than just walk the street and gaze into shop windows I m glad so many stores carried this book and I m glad my husband bought it for me so I could carry it home to enjoy Heather Lende s captivating essays and wondrously different life Disclosure My husband said it was time I read something just for me, but I thought I d still write a review anyway. Tiny Haines, Alaska, Is Ninety Miles North Of Juneau, Accessible Mainly By Water Or Air And Only When The Weather Is Good There S No Traffic Light And No Mail Delivery People Can Vanish Without A Trace And Funerals Are A Community Affair Heather Lende Posts Both The Obituaries And The Social Column For Her Local Newspaper If Anyone Knows The Going On In This Close Knit Town From Births To Weddings To Funerals She Does Whether Contemplating The Mysterious Death Of Eccentric Speedy Joe, Who Wore Nothing But A Red Union Suit And A Hat He Never Took Off, Not Even For A Haircut Researching The Details Of A One Legged Lady Gold Miner S Adventurous Life Worrying About Her Son S First Goat Hunting Expedition Observing The Awe Inspiring Chilkat Bald Eagle Festival Or Ice Skating In The Shadow Of Glacier Studded Mountains, Lende S Warmhearted Style Brings Us Inside Her Small Town Life We Meet Her Husband, Chip, Who Owns The Local Lumber Yard Their Five Children And A Colorful Assortment Of Quirky Friends And Neighbors, Including Aging Hippies, Salty Fishermen, Native Tlingit Indians, And Volunteer Undertakers As Well As The Moose, Eagles, Sea Lions, And Bears With Whom They Share This Wild And Perilous Land Like Bailey White S Tales Of Southern Life Or Garrison Keillor S Reports From The Midwest, NPR Commentator Heather Lende S Take On Her Offbeat Alaskan Hometown Celebrates Life In A Dangerous And Breathtakingly Beautiful Place I m surprised at the high star ratings for this book.There s nothing really wrong with it but I found it to be a complete bore The author writes the obituaries for the local paper so many of her chapters revolve around the death of townsfolk Where this could be a great opportunity to learn meaningful stories to me the chapters all fall flat and seemed like Person X lived in a small town, was happy without a lot of money, loved the land over and over and over.There are some ruminations about faith and spirituality which felt disjointed Surprising, since you d think that type of exploration would work with the overall theme of death.I also found the author never really told us enough about herself or her family Even the chapter about adopting her daughter seemed cold and remote to me The interspersed snippets from the local paper were annoying too I guess the details of the local church BBQ were supposed to seem charming but without context of the town they just seemed hokey and made up.Do not recommend this one. I just loved this book It is fun A Prairie Home Companion for Alaska with all the nuances and eccentricities of character that make reading so enjoyable Each chapter is a story unto itself, so this lends itself to those readers traveling on business, or those frazzled moms and dads, who need to pick up some reading before bedtime that will make them laugh, smile and relax I hope the author continues with her writing for those of us on mainland. I wanted to like this book As I read it, though, the word that overwhelmed everything else was smug We re better than everyone else, because we live far, far away from medical care We re better than everyone else, because we all take care of each other Fine, except that the actual stories she tells belie the smug attitudefor , please visit my blog Wine and Proses Based on what I heard from friends about this book, I was expecting something charming, uplifting, enchanting tales from a place I d rather live I think a better title for this book would have been If You Died Here, I d Know Your Name because the stories start to take on the cadence of a speech by Mr Weir on Freaks and Geeks I used to know a guy like that Want to know what happened to him HE DIED Lots of spaghetti dinners, lots of God is good , lots of winding tales about coming to people s houses after loved ones died to get the facts about their lives I would say about 1 3 of the deaths portrayed in this book were about kids which made it especially depressing , and some of the most gruesome, disgusting hunting recollections I ve ever read I actually felt nauseous reading some of this The goat stumbled from the impact of the bullet, slumped, and started to fall on his knees, then leapt forward right off his perch, bouncing off the rocks three times before slamming dead onto a ledge the hide peeled away smooth and dry, like a paper label off a jar Without the fur covering, goat legs look almost human Slicing steaming meat off bones.I dug around in the warm muscle tissue until I could find a bone, then gripped it with one hand and cut the flesh off it with the other It was hard for me to read this book and not judge the author with things like when she says the plays in her town were better than seeing Cats or The Sound of Music on Broadway in NYC, or when she talks about having 7 kids in this city without a hospital, one of which is an adopted daughter she named Stoli, after the vodka Or every time she talks about the conservative, narrow minded politics of her town but then excuses it and drops it with a I still love my neighbors I wouldn t want to live anywhere else I mean, seriously Give me a break I really wanted this book to be over about 100 pages in It wasn t for me My rating on here is generous because the book wasn t badly written, just frustrating to read. I used to read the weekly articles Heather wrote for the Anchorage Daily News I didn t always agree with her politics, but I always enjoyed the hometown sey feeling of her articles It appears Heather got the idea for this book from her job of writing obituaries for the local newspaperand each chapter seems to go off from getting ready to write someone s obit This book is like reading the musings of an old friend I have friends in Haines who weren t mentioned by name in the book and I definitely think you see the world through different eyes when you live in one of the many small corners of Alaska Heather s sense of humor and her zest for life is definitely felt in the pages of this book Heather is a woman I would love to visit with someday.