Book Review: The Solace of Open Spaces

February Book Review

The Solace of Open Space

BY Gretel Ehrlich

Especially when compared to the other books we’ve read about Wyoming, sheep ranching, and women in the West, Gretel Ehrlich’s The Solace of Open Spaces takes the cake. Ehrlich writes with the staccato beat of a person with so much to say but not enough time or space to say it, so they resort to explaining their surroundings with as few words as possible.

Unlike other, similar memoirs, The Solace of Open Spaces was written as individual essays and then compiled later in the most logical way: not chronologically based on date, but on description. You never have to question a description of a character, because Ehrlich has already described them in a previous chapter, even if that previous chapter takes place after the chapter you’re reading. She also exudes not only confidence in her ranching capabilities despite being a through-and-through easterner, but also positivity in the worst situations, for humans in general, for ranchers, and for women.

This book is highly recommended by the club!