read: 9 September 2007
This book was a little dramatic. On the other hand the topic is also pretty dramatic. Everyone has their choices as to whose “fault” the dust bowl storms of the 30s were. Egan places the blame squarely on the shoulders of the homesteaders and the fluctuation in wheat prices that made the only chance of profit-making depdent on tearing up more land. It’s a great tale, told through the eyes of people who had lived through it as young people and through the documents of others who wrote about it at the time. There are a few photos but mostly the story is told through a variety of different people -- German immigrants, young married couples, drifter/farmers trying to make a new start -- describing the open land of the praries and what brought them there and what made them stay.
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