From Goodreads: “Just days after Raynor learns that Moth, her husband of 32 years, is terminally ill, their home and livelihood is taken away. With nothing left and little time, they make the brave and impulsive decision to walk the 630 miles of the sea-swept South West Coast Path, from Somerset to Dorset, via Devon and Cornwall.
They have almost no money for food or shelter and must carry only the essentials for survival on their backs as they live wild in the ancient, weathered landscape of cliffs, sea and sky. Yet through every step, every encounter, and every test along the way, their walk becomes a remarkable journey.
The Salt Path is an honest and life-affirming true story of coming to terms with grief and the healing power of the natural world. Ultimately, it is a portrayal of home, and how it can be lost, rebuilt, and rediscovered in the most unexpected ways.“
I’ve been meaning to read or listen to this book ever since I read a wonderful review by Caryl @ Mrs Bloggs The Average Reader about 18 months ago. In fact I almost went to see the author talk about her book at our local literary festival last year, so this book has been on my radar for a while. I finally borrowed it from the library through the Libby app and I’m so glad I finally read it.
I love memoirs and books about hiking in particular, I admire anyone who can keep going physically and mentally over rough terrain day and night, and for pleasure. The author’s story is different though as it’s not for pleasure, but out of necessity because her and her husband Moth, are homeless. It’s an awful story that could happen to any of us, at any time, through unexpected circumstances and something that quite frankly terrifies me!
This book was a wonderful read full of hope, laughter, tears, kindness, red-headed women, wild camping, surfers, early morning dog walkers, a peregrine, badgers, deer and a tortoise! The descriptions of the scenery were perfect, bringing back memories of walking parts of this path a few years ago, but under very different circumstances to the author and her husband.
I loved the author’s honesty about the situation and how they coped or sometimes didn’t. I admire their tenacity to keep going and also wanting to tell the world about the plight of the homeless in the UK, it’s definitely made me rethink about some of my attitudes about homelessness.
I definitely recommend this book if you enjoy memoirs, it’s a new favourite for me and one that I’ll definitely be reading again.