Same Ground: Chasing Family Down the California Gold Rush Trail

Product Details
$19.95  $18.55
ECW Press
Publish Date
5.58 X 8.43 X 0.84 inches | 0.94 pounds

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About the Author

Russell Wangersky is the multiple-award-winning author of seven books of fiction and non-fiction, including Burning Down the House, Whirl Away, and The Hour of Bad Decisions. Formerly a columnist with the SaltWire newspaper chain, he is currently editor-in-chief of the Saskatchewan Postmedia newspapers. He lives in Saskatoon, SK.

"Russell Wangersky is a natural-born storyteller, and he weaves together two starkly different, yet oddly complementary journeys -- past and present, home and away -- and does so with great aplomb. Less a travel book than a palimpsest, Same Ground overlays the Gold Rush Trail of '49 with its modern equivalent, featuring cowboys and cardsharps, dodgy motels and tatty roadside attractions, the 'natural beauty' of a slag pour and towns that died of thirst. A thoughtful, meditative look at the open road and where it can lead us." -- Will Ferguson, Giller Prize-winning author of 419 and The Finder
"Russell Wangersky weaves the diary of his ancestor's trek in 1849 with his own pursuit along the California Gold Rush Trail in a seamless tapestry that melds space and time. His theme is connection: his own lost family, the families he and his wife Leslie meet on the blue highways of America, the moms and pops who run the motels and the diners. Same Ground takes us on a wild chase into the uncharted territories of the heart." -- Wayne Grady, author of The Good Father
"Overlaid like a stereoscope, past and present give Wangersky's pilgrimage along the Gold Rush trail vivid three-dimensional reality. His great-great-grandfather's diary is packed with fascinating detail, and the quest to see what he saw opens the old and the new west to our eyes. As the modern couple scuffle around in the desert, the road also reveals the anatomy of a marriage -- as all the best journeys do. A thoroughly enjoyable book." -- Marina Endicott, author of The Difference
"I fell absolutely in love with Russell Wangersky's Same Ground. The charming sense of wry humour, the quest to understand family and find roots, the deeply moving search for meaning in the face of mortality, the sharp insights, the keen eye, the vicarious peeks into life on the Gold Rush Trail of 1849, the road trip with a purpose -- all of it makes for delightful company. What a ride! I'd follow this literary voice anywhere." -- Angie Abdou, author of This One Wild Life
"Same Ground emerges as a rich and dynamic story of family, in which Wangersky draws his own conclusions about what defines family and home through his travels. The author balances descriptions of colourful sights, personalities, and moments, with reflections on culture, migration and values. His prose is vivid and honest; his insights invite the readers to probe deeply into the values of culture and family that shape us." -- The Miramichi Reader
"I'm enjoying Russell's exquisite descriptions of sagebrush, the quirkiness of vintage motels and family diners, and the expanses of night sky and open plain as they drive as close as they can to the route his ancestor followed by horse and wagon, by mule and on foot. But what I'm enjoying even more is their pursuit of family ties, the search for linkages and meaning between that generation and the ones that followed." --Saltwire
"This was a great read." -- Lady Reading 365 blog