How It Looks Going Back, a nostalgic memior of growing up in wild Montana

How It Looks Going Back, Growing Up in the Montana Woods by Doris Knowles Pulis – Riverbend Publishing, 2009how

In the summer of 1949, Darwin and Marilyn Knowles did what few others would ever consider doing during the economic progress following World War II. They packed up their household and their two daughters and moved from bustling California to the Yaak River Valley, a wild, unforgiving wilderness nestled in northern Montana. Foregoing easy access to stores, schools, and electricity, they made their home in a cabin by a lake with no running water, no electricity, no central heating, no indoor plumbing, and no idea what was really in store for them. Their neighbors were miles away. The only road leading to town was dirt and easily flooded or became a car-swallowing mud hole when the snows melted each spring. The local school, with merely a handful of students, was often closed due to weather. On the other hand, they had easy access to hunting and fishing, an endless supply of fresh mountain air, and a close-knit community that is a rarity in today’s America.

Told from the point of view of youngest daughter, Dee, readers follow the adventures of a girl growing up in a manner that isn’t an option to 99% of the population today. Dee and her sister Bob learned to become self-sufficient by living without modern conveniences. And when they weren’t doing that, they had adventures that must’ve turned their parents’ hair gray. From horseback riding to adopting feral cats and chicken-killing dogs, Dee and Bob are a hilarious handful, and Dee is a great narrator. Innocent and mischievous, she has a knack for introducing readers to a wonderful cast of Yaak characters in a manner that will make you laugh out loud. A fun, fast read for anyone who is in the mood for a nostalgic look back at the good old days.

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