05 May 2019

Book Review: Barbecue mit Indianern by Julia Behringer

This is a book that I enjoyed and at the same time I hated. And depending on current topic, I would seesaw back and forth between these two extremes.

See, as a second-language-learner of German, this book actually opened quite a bit of new vocabulary for me. The book is a travelogue of one woman's love affair with the Wild West. Julia the author goes to Montana to spend a few months following her dreams, so to speak. So the book uses quite a bit of vocabulary about ranching, horses, animal husbandry, survival tactics in the wilderness, and other topics that I typically don't encounter in my daily life in Berlin. So for that reason, I enjoyed this book as it has opened new areas for me in the German language.

On the other hand, I really just cannot identify with the author, who seemed to have some hormonal issues as she waxes poetic about various things: her longing for the wilderness, her crush with Brandon, and many other things. Personality-wise, she seemed to be the total opposite of me. She has a corporate job but she feels like she's trapped in it, and so every day she longs for the wide expanse of Montana. Of course, she also has a relationship that isn't really working, so her trip to Montana definitely sounds like she's escaping from some issues at home.

I suppose that's fine, not everyone is perfect. We all have our issues. But I suppose I was expecting a little bit more technical narrative and a little bit less romance. There were parts of the book that felt like I was reading a soap opera. In any case, I am glad that the book definitely had significant amounts of narrative about nature and how to travel in the wilderness of North America.

In any case, I do acknowledge that different people have different travel styles. Some people go to a place and the trip impresses them so much that they decide to write a book about it. I haven't really travelled long term like the author did: the longest trip I have been taking lasted only three weeks. They were impressive, but definitely not enough that would move me to write a book.

In any case this was an okay book. I give it 3 out of 5 stars. If you want to learn a lot about horses and ranching, then this is a good book to start. Just try to ignore the sappy narrative at times.

See my other book reviews here.

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