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Publisher's Summary

Gold is in my blood, in my breath, even in the flecks in my eyes.

Lee Westfall has a strong, loving family. She has a home she loves and a loyal steed. She has a best friend - who might want to be something more.

She also has a secret.

Lee can sense gold in the world around her. Veins deep in the earth. Small nuggets in a stream. Even gold dust caught underneath a fingernail. She has kept her family safe and able to buy provisions, even through the harshest winters. But what would someone do to control a girl with that kind of power? A person might murder for it.

When everything Lee holds dear is ripped away, she flees west to California - where gold has just been discovered. Perhaps this will be the one place a magical girl can be herself. If she survives the journey.

The acclaimed Rae Carson begins a sweeping new trilogy set in Gold Rush-era America, about a young woman with a powerful and dangerous gift.

©2015 Rae Carson (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Better than expected

I hesitated on spending my credit . A girl disguised as a boy and the western theme is not a story I would normally want to read. But I loved Rae Carson Fire and Thorns series so I had to give this a try. Wow, Rae Carson does it again! Well written, with another strong and likeable heroine. The detail and vivid description made the story so real. Who knew wagons traveling to California could be so interesting. Once I started listening, I could not stop. Engaging story and one of the best narration I''ve heard. Great start to a series, book #2 is going to be even better.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great story, beautifully narrated

Loved this pioneer story with a supernatural twist. It was just enough western for me and man, can Rae Carson tell a story. The narrator is excellent: perfect fit for the main character and does the different voices convincingly, without jarring you out of the story. I don't think it could have been read better. Looking forward to book 2!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Stevon
  • Tempe, AZ, United States
  • 08-22-16

suprisingly good

First time author for me, in fact, the author was a surprise. When I bought the book all I saw was the title, which looked interesting, and I read the summary, which also looked intriguing and liking to try new authors I went ahead and made the purchase. In researching the author I see she lives in Arizona, graduated from college although I couldn't determine what college, and she calls herself nerdy. So I'll go with that.

The story starts out in the late 1840's in Georgia. I don't think I ever knew there was a gold rush in Georgia that played out quickly. Then gold was discovered in California and a mass exodus of Americans from all over heads west looking for gold began. The protagonist of the story turns out to be a very resilient 16 year old girl who has a knack for finding gold. After her parents are murdered in Georgia she sets out to California and the bulk of the story is that trek, the people and the hardships she encountered.

This supposedly is the first book in a trilogy and the second book isn't out yet. I wouldn't typically buy a book with a 16 year old heroine but I did enjoy the story.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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A smashing hit with a great narrator!

I had the pleasure of listening to this audio and loved it. I really enjoyed the story and the main character Leah or Lee. Leah is able to witch up gold and when her parents are murdered by her uncle, he wants to use her ability to make him rich. She decides to runaway and head west for the gold rush in California. She finds out that you need to trust a few people and you can make your own family. I loved how developed the characters are. You feel really connected to each one of them. You want them to fail and succeed. It is quite the experience. I liked the way the setting was described and I felt transplanted back to the 1800's. Now the narrator was fantastic. She is one of the best narrators I have ever heard. I look forward to reading or listening to the rest of the series when it becomes available

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Lovely Western Tale

It's nice to listen too the tales old Western from this young ladies point of view. She is a noble character. I hope there is more to this young woman's story. It was difficult to distinguish the male voices.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Exceeded all expectations

From the very start, I was skeptical that this book would be for me. I love fantasy books, but am a little iffy on western settings and themes exploring wild frontiers. So a story set in Gold Rush-era America about a young woman trying to make her way to California was going to be 50/50 as something I would enjoy.

But not long after this book started, I was delighted to discover that In Walk on Earth a Stranger was a fantastic, engrossing listen. The protagonist is a girl named Leah Westfall who has a secret gift that makes her coveted by her. To escape him and his plans for using her for his own gains, Leah takes on the guise of a boy in order to escape and strike it out on her own cross-country.

Potential Spoilers Ahead:
First of all, if you like a lot of magic in your fantasy, this is not the book for you. The only fantasy element in this book is Lee’s special power, her ability to sense gold around her, which will be a handy skill for someone heading west during the Gold Rush. But her "powers" don't come into play throughout much of the story, which mostly involves a lot of traveling. And more traveling...

Secondly, this is not a fast-paced, action-packed adventure story. This is a tale of survival, focusing more on the emotional journey rather than the physical one. Sure there are the toils and troubles that one would expect with a young woman heading west in a time where men felt women should be tending hearth and home. In this book, the focus is on the personal relationships forged in the fires of controversy and danger. Carson gives her audience intensive character development and in-depth relationships, so that the people you are introduced to in this book become your family. You cry when they do and rejoice along with them.

Thirdly, this is not a love story. While there is a hint of some kind of romantic feelings between Lee and her best friend Jefferson, the romance is on the back burner and the usual romantic drama doesn't cloud the story.

Rae Carson is a fantastic author with an incredible talent for weaving an intricate story. The vividness of her writing, makes you feel like you are living the events with the characters. And the characters themselves are so multi-faceted, each with their own good and bad points so that they seem all the more real.

Another nice thing about this book is that it can be read as a self-contained story. Of course, Carson leaves plenty of breadcrumbs along this journey to pick up for the later books, but she’s not leaving us with any burning questions or an infuriating cliffhanger. This is YA fiction done right.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Your Oxen Has Died

If you ever played Oregon Trail growing up, then you need to run right out and read this book. This fantasy novel has many other great qualities, including interesting characters, social commentary on the historical time period, a touch of magic in a protagonist who has the ability to sense gold, and a terrible villain who murders, steals, enslaves, and covets without even a hint of remorse.

Anyone who loved Oregon Trail will find things to love in this dangerous adventure West, away from evil and towards gold. The concept alone is a chocolate cupcake filled with sweet cream, and the rest of the story is the frosting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Fascinating

The way Rae Carson blends historical fiction with fantasy is fascinating--it's the kind of fantasy world you almost believe could exist. There's just a veil between this world and the unknown. For fans of historical fiction and fans of fantasy, you couldn't find a better combination.

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Great female perspective on the gold Rush of 1849.

Loved it, when I got to the end and went to more. Great perspective of a woman dealing with life in a man's world

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wonderful story

I know there's more books in the series, but I liked the way this ended so much that I will not continue. it's such a good story and historically accurate and very good. I like the way the main character talks like a southerner and the way she is read!