Book Review of
The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey
A major bestseller that has been hailed as a “quintessential American story” (Christian Science Monitor), Rinker Buck’s The Oregon Trail is an epic account of traveling the 2,000-mile length of the Oregon Trail the old-fashioned way—in a covered wagon with a team of mules—that has captivated readers, critics, and booksellers from coast to coast. Simultaneously a majestic journey across the West, a significant work of history, and a moving personal saga, Buck’s chronicle is a “laugh-out-loud masterpiece” (Willamette Week) that “so ensnares the emotions it becomes a tear-jerker at its close” (Star Tribune, Minneapolis) and “will leave you daydreaming and hungry to see this land” (The Boston Globe).
If you want a book about the Oregon Trail that is a little different than you normal history book, this is the book for you. I grew up about one hour from the end of the Oregon Trail. A big part of history in school for me was about the Oregon Trail. I have visited history centers, read books, watched documentaries, and have been to a few reenactments all about the Oregon Trail.
This book was a little different though in that it mixed Oregon Trail history with a modern day trip across the trail. I started reading this book because I was curious and it sounded interesting, but I wasn’t sure I was going to enjoy it. I ended up loving it. It made history fun by mixing it with modern day events. This is the story of two brothers, a covered wagon, and a team of mules who traveled 2,000 miles of the Oregon trail, the old-fashioned way.
The author does an excellent job of mixing the history of the Oregon Trail with modern day times. He talks about the trials people had traveling the trail years ago, but he also mixes in how modern times have changed the trail. The things we have lost, but also the things that people are trying hard to preserve. He does it all in an interesting and entertaining way. Once I started this book, I did not want to put it down.