By Erica Olsen
Four To-Be-Read Piles =
Totally Worthy of Your To-Be-Read Pile!
Reviewer: Sage Webb
This beautiful collection gives readers the American West in vibrant, original colors. With a background in archeology (at least at the time of Torrey House Press’s 2012 release of Recapture, she worked in archives and curation for archeology museums), Erica Olsen clearly loves the Four Corners region, the desert, canyons, and the vastness of the West. She also seems to love twisty, unique, human prose. In “Utah Wildmall Rangers,” for example, Olsen gives us an “Image Management Plan” at “Utah Canyons, America’s first wildmall.” It’s what it sounds like: a virtual desert tailor-made to satisfy tourists . . . until a couple rangers grow tired of “touchable pixels.” Bringing in contraband gnats, dust, and tripping hazards, these two break out of perfection and savor beauty in the un-beauty of the real.
Olsen’s collection makes me want to jump in the camper and head toward Zion, Canyon de Chelly, or Moab. It also reminds me of what it means to share adventures with someone who will always “get the joke.” In this age of COVID, if you need a break, grab a copy and take a virtual trip over the horizon.