Letters from the Woods

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Letters from the Woods is a collection of “slice-of-life” essays on faith, family and the wilderness experience derived from 32 issues of a quarterly canoe journal that the author wrote and published between 1995 and 2003 for over 10,000 subscribers in 48 states. The hardcover edition of Letters from the Woods is out of print, but a paperback and a Kindle version are available through Amazon. These essays have been re-published in a new hardcover title, Hurley’s Journal (Ragbagger Press, 2015; 782 pp. $59.95), which includes also the trip reports, maps, and additional photographs from the original journal during its entire eight-year run.

Here is what some reviewers have had to say:

Wilmington Star-News:
“Hurley writes in the grain of Annie Dillard, Like Dillard—or like Hemingway in his Nick Adams stories—his immediate subject is nature but his deeper subject is often something else. The canoe trip becomes a small simulacrum of the larger spiritual journey. Hurley ponders his childhood ‘in an alcoholic family on the outskirts of normalcy,’ and he often thinks and writes about his son Kip, who frequently accompanies him on his excursions.”

“ ‘Remember to scout the rapids and carry the rough ones. It is best to rise early and find camp before twilight. Gather your firewood before the rain comes and share it with those who have none. Pitch your tent on high ground, and leave each camp a little better than you found it.’ Hurley, like Hemingway, glories in the job cleanly done, and the days stretch out like an endless summer.”

Paddler Magazine:
“Always honest, sometimes humorous, this is a good book to keep at your bedside or comfy-chair table. Perusing a chapter or two at a time provides plenty of fodder for your own life ponderings. Like a visit to the campfire with an intelligent friend, this book will waft you into the woods and streams and help get you through the days when you must stay away from the water.”

Raleigh News & Observer:
“A celebration of universal truths that makes easy reading while exploring deep within the reader’s psyche. A deep and passionate tale of wilderness adventures, well worth reading.”

(Ragbagger Press, 2005)
Trade paperback: $9.99
E-book: $0.99
ISBN: 9780976127529
198 pp.

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