Emmy is a shy, sheltered sixteen-year-old when her mom, Kate, sends her to eastern Washington to an aunt and uncle she never knew she had. Fifteen years earlier, Kate had abandoned her sister, Beth, when she fled her painful past and their fundamentalist church. And now, Beth believes Emmy’s participation in a faith healing is her last hope for having a child.
Emmy goes reluctantly, but before long she knows she has come home. She feels tied to the rugged landscape of coulees and scablands. And she meets Reuben, the Native American boy next door.
In a part of the country where the age-old tensions of cowboys versus Indians still play out, theirs is the kind of magical, fraught love that can only survive with the passion and resilience of youth. Their story is mirrored by the generation before them, who fears that their mistakes are doomed to repeat themselves in Emmy and Reuben. With Louise Erdrich’s sense of place and a love story in the tradition of Water for Elephants, this is an atmospheric family drama in which the question of home is a spiritual one, in which getting over the past is the only hope for the future.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.60(d)|
|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
What People are Saying About This
“A heartrending exploration of longing, loyalty and love. With palpable sympathy, Bergstrom captures the rugged and desolate atmosphere of eastern Washington and the distinctive people who call that place home.”
—Christina Schwarz, bestselling author of Drowning Ruth and The Edge of the Earth
“Heather Brittain Bergstorm’s debut Steal the North is one of those rare novels that has everything. It’s about family, the ties that bind us no matter how hard we sometimes try to escape. It’s about love: between mothers and daughters, between sisters, between men and womenmost memorably between a young Native American man and a white Californian girl, a Romeo and Juliet story on an eastern Washington reservation. Most of all, it has a rich sense of place, of how we find our homes in the soil, in our roots, in the places we’ve left and in other people. This is a resonant, powerfully moving novel.”
—Jenna Blum, New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us and The Stormchasers
“A shimmering debut about the ties that bind, and the bonds that save us, especially when we least expect it. Shattering, romantic, and deeply profound, (and how many books can claim such adjectives?) Bergstrom’s novel lays a dazzlingly original claim to the unpredictable landscape of the human heart.”
—Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author of Is This Tomorrow and Pictures of You
“In Steal The North, Heather Brittain Bergstrom has written the kind of debut novel one longs to read—full of crooked fates, hopeful hearts, and the bitten courage it takes to thrive—a tale, ultimately, of redemption.”
—Carol Edgarian, New York Times bestselling author of Three Stages of Amazement
“A sweeping debut novel of love and faith, tragedy and redemption, and above all, the meaning of home. Bergstrom has captured the spirit of the American west as well as the complicated ties between mothers and daughters, between sisters, and especially the all-consuming bond of first love. Unforgettable.”
—Kathleen Grissom, New York Times bestselling author of The Kitchen House
“Heather Brittain Bergstrom’s visceral first novel, a story of love too powerful to die, haunts me. Steal the North stole my heart.”
—Sandra Dallas, New York Times bestselling author of Fallen Women
“Steal the North is out to steal our hearts. An intimate look at the struggles of love and hard choices: whether to run away or face life full on. Bergstrom allows us to see both sides of big choices—following one’s heritage, religion, family, true love, or breaking away to find one’s own path.”
—Sarah Willis, author of Some Things That Stay
“Nothing short of magical. A chorus of beguiling voices gifts us both a swoon-worthy story of first love, and a smart, addictive family drama. Bergstrom’s considerable talent is evident in every page, every line.”
—Samuel Park, author of This Burns My Heart
“In Steal the North, Heather Brittain Bergstrom has created a richly detailed, emotionally intricate love story set in the windswept scablands of Eastern Washington. Steeped in the myth of the land and the lore of family, and exploring questions of love and faith, this novel is sexy, raw, and heartbreaking.”
—Keija Parssinen, author of The Ruins of Us
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I was lucky enough to receive an advance copy of this novel. I finished it in one night. Captures your heart from the start. A novel you never want to end and characters that stay with you long after you are finshed reading it. I am buying a copy for my friend who loves to discuss novels as much as I do. This type of friend and this type of novel are few and far between.
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings A heavy book that hits a lot of big subjects that can impact a teen's life. Emmy is the main character and she is sent to an aunt's house that she never even knew existed to spend a summer where her mother and aunt grew up surrounded by the life that her mother escaped. She must learn about the past and decide what path she wants for herself. Told through almost every character's perspective, I enjoyed getting each of their point of views. They each were able to share their side of the story while at the same time moving the story along. With all of the basic teen angst subjects, there was an addition due to the location - the tension with American Indians and "white people." I have not read a book that addressed this still current topic, so I enjoyed reading a fiction story that talks about a different race that is still feeling like a underclass minority.
Absolutely loved it!! My favorite books are those written from multiple perspectives. The author crafted deeply complex characters, each forced on a transformational journey to explore old and new identities. I loved the mother character and the way she tied her to modern women; the apparent unyielding character, who had actually made the ultimate sacrifice to bring her child up in a healthier environment, her references to everyday things that continually cause irritation, such as her teeth. The desolate beauty shown in the souls of the characters and in the landscape, deep haunting pathways and crevasses, leave you forever hearing voices of those gone before and marveling at the awe inspiring beauty of the land and of ties that forever connect.