Friday, February 12, 2016

Fast Into the Night by Debbie Clarke Moderow

Product Details

Fast into the Night: A Woman, Her Dogs, and Their Journey North on the Iditarod Trail

Feb 2, 2016 by Debbie Clarke Moderow

A captivating memoir of one woman’s attempt to finish the Iditarod, led by her team of spunky huskies with whom she shares a fascinating and inextricable bond

At age forty-seven, a mother of two, Debbie Moderow was not your average musher in the Iditarod, but that’s where she found herself when, less than 200 miles from the finish line, her dogs decided they didn’t want to run anymore. After all her preparation, after all the careful management of her team, and after their running so well for over a week, the huskies balked. But the sting of not completing the race after coming so far was nothing compared to the disappointment Moderow felt in having lost touch with her dogs.   
Fast into the Night is the gripping story of Moderow’s journeys along the Iditarod trail with her team of spunky huskies: Taiga and Su, Piney and Creek, Nacho and Zeppy, Juliet and the headstrong leader, Kanga. The first failed attempt crushed Moderow’s confidence, but after reconnecting with her dogs she returned and ventured again to Nome, pushing through injuries,  hallucinations, epic storms, flipped sleds, and clashing personalities, both human and canine. And she prevailed.   Part adventure, part love story, part inquiry into the mystery of the connection between humans and dogs, Fast into the Night is an exquisitely written memoir of a woman, her dogs, and what can happen when someone puts herself in that place between daring and doubt—and soldiers on

This was both a boring book to read and a very interesting one.  Boring in that I couldn't mesh with Ms Moderow and the race didn't feel real to me; interesting because I did learn a bit about Alaska and the race. 

But in the end, this is a  story of an ego-driven musher ( why did she REALLY need to take this second challenge, because she didn't finish the first time or because her son and husband both finished leaving her to be the lone 'loser'?) who comes from a privileged background where everything came to her too easily and without working for it.  the book  left me cold. (no pun intended) I too come from Connecticut and the author sounds like she comes from one of the older, 'tighter knit' towns and her life revolved around the pursuits of those with too much time on their hands.

I really would have loved to read more about the details of the race - who were the sponsors, how much did it cost to train and race, how did the family balance work with the race preparations,  what was it like to eat on the trail or go to the bathroom in so many layers of clothes -you know... the personal aspects of being in the race.

In the end it was, for me, simply a lovely story about a woman and her dogs, but I did not feel anything.  I should have been able to put myself into  her shoes, but unfortunately, I was unable to do so.
ARC supplied by publisher.