Review: Walk On Earth A Stranger (#1, Gold Seer Trilogy) by Rae Carson - Vilma Iris | Lifestyle Blogger

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Review: Walk On Earth A Stranger (#1, Gold Seer Trilogy) by Rae Carson

Imaginative and fascinating—
Rae Carson delivers an epic, exciting adventure readers will devour.


Lee Westfall has a secret. She can sense the presence of gold in the world around her. Veins deep beneath the earth, pebbles in the river, nuggets dug up from the forest floor. The buzz of gold means warmth and life and home—until everything is ripped away by a man who wants to control her. Left with nothing, Lee disguises herself as a boy and takes to the trail across the country. Gold was discovered in California, and where else could such a magical girl find herself, find safety?

Walk on Earth a Stranger, the first book in this new trilogy, introduces—as only Rae Carson can—a strong heroine, a perilous road, a fantastical twist, and a slow-burning romance. Includes a map and author’s note on historical research.

My Review

Bestselling author (and one of my favorites) Rae Carson vividly brings to life the story of Leah Westfall—a girl with the ability to divine gold. She senses it, feels it… a both physical and magical pull from the earth itself.

“Gold is in my blood, in my breath, even in my eyes.”

Set in the mid-1840s, during a time where gold beckoned from the west, Carson introduces us to families like the Westfalls, who live in ailing homesteads as they struggle to make ends meet. Leah (or Lee as they call her), bears the burden of working their land and bringing food home.

“I’m the girl who hunts and farms and pans for gold because her daddy never had sons.”

Lee is strong, resilient and adores her parents, but when tragedy befalls, she’s forced into a corner. With the promise of a forfeit life in the ownership of a man she detests, she flees west, in search of her best friend Jefferson, and in hopes of a golden future.

“It’s the easiest thing in the world to get to California—you just aim yourself west and start walking.”

As with The Girl of Fire and Thorns, the magic is in the journey. I viscerally felt it every time Lee ran into trouble on these perilous roads. Disguised as a boy and with danger chasing close behind, Lee struggles to survive the treacherous passage west.

Along the way, Lee learns to survive on her own, while meeting up with people, good and bad, as she earns her keep as part of a caravan of covered wagons. It’s a lesson in survival of the fittest, for sure.

Walk on Earth a Stranger reads mostly like a historical fiction. I would have loved to see her magical ability play a bigger role, but I wager we’ll see the fantastical elements more prominently in subsequent books. I also can’t wait to learn more about Lee’s parents’ background and how it led to the tragic circumstances early in the story.

I absolutely love Rae’s descriptive writing, her singular style of storytelling and her intriguing characters. Between this fascinating time in history, the slow-burning romance, and a dangerous, action-packed adventure, I couldn’t put it down.

“Everything is bigger out here in the west. I suppose I should feel smaller by comparison, but it makes me feel bigger too, like the whole world is growing inside me.”

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