by GerrieB: Inland captivated me from the beginning. It is that rare story, one that once I reached the end I wanted to go back to the beginning and start again. There are so many pieces that Obreht provides that lay there waiting, and yet somehow are carried along within the writing, some barely noticed until almost silently they click one by one into place. The story is taut and I had the feeling as I was reading that I was watching a locomotive racing toward a herd of sheep on a track and no way to stop it. I couldn’t wait to finish but was forced to read the last 40 pages in small fits and starts as the tension was crushing. Secrets play a role in the story and choices can have far reaching impacts. There is unleashed fury in the book and reality of the consequences of choice. This is a tightly written story with a small but very distinctive cast. The harsh landscape is a key player in the book and Obreht is such a skilled writer you can feel the parching of your throat and I found myself reading with a glass of water by my side. Nora, the frontierswoman and a key character is multi layered, in fact, there isn’t a simplistic character in the entire book. Inland is a western but it is also a story about the search for and need for a home and the strength and courage within us to overcome even the worst days and move forward while carrying those horrible experiences with us.