Walk on Earth a Stranger falls short of the gold.
Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson, the first book in the Gold Seer trilogy, follows Lee Westfall, a girl who can sense gold. After her parents are murdered, Lee is on the run from their killer dressed as a boy heading west for the California Gold Rush. However, the journey isn’t as easy as the reports promised.
Before reading Walk on Earth a Stranger, I heard that the book moved quite slowly but was a nice introduction to the series. After reading this book, I definitely agree that it moves incredibly slow. However, I didn’t find it do be a great introduction to a new series that makes me wants to read the next book.
I think one of the biggest problems in this book would have to be the character development. The characters fall into two categories: they are either so bland it’s hard to pinpoint who they really are or their character clings onto one stereotype and never develops further. I found this to be especially true with the diverse characters and the antagonists in the story. Lee’s best friend is half Cherokee, but it seems his identity never develops past that. On the other hand, Lee’s uncle is the typical western villain, but never really delivers anything but a looming threat over Lee’s journey.
Another issue with this book, as mentioned earlier, would have to be the pacing. I was really impressed with the first few chapters of the book, but then it went downhill from there. Especially during Lee’s trip west, the story seems to drag on and on while repeating the same information over and over. I was particularly disappointed with the ending of the book. There’s always the threat of what will happen when Lee runs back into her uncle again. However, when this finally happens, there’s just another looming threat given without any action.
While this book possessed an interesting premise, for me, it failed in its execution. Since I didn’t really care about any of the characters and I spent the entire book waiting for something huge to happen just to be disappointed, I didn’t really enjoy reading this book. I give this book two out of five stars.