The Road to Paradise

The Road to Paradise

In 1927, Margie Lane, an avid naturalist, convinces her Senator father to procure her a position at the fledgling Mount Rainier National Park. Since Ranger Ford Brannon lost his father in a climbing accident, he doubts his ability to protect the park and its many visitors. He certainly doesn't relish the job of watching over an idealistic and privileged young woman with no...

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Title:The Road to Paradise
Author:Karen Barnett
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The Road to Paradise Reviews

  • Vicki

    If you like a story that has really well-developed characters, a wonderful message of how God is in the beauty of nature, a romance between a nature-loving young woman and an emotionally broken park ranger, then you need to pick up The Road to Paradise.

    I was touched and inspired by Marge's love of nature. It made me relate to how I feel when I am at a national park or just when I commune with nature at daybreak. With a menacing entrepreneur named Philip shows up the fight begins to save the par

    If you like a story that has really well-developed characters, a wonderful message of how God is in the beauty of nature, a romance between a nature-loving young woman and an emotionally broken park ranger, then you need to pick up The Road to Paradise.

    I was touched and inspired by Marge's love of nature. It made me relate to how I feel when I am at a national park or just when I commune with nature at daybreak. With a menacing entrepreneur named Philip shows up the fight begins to save the park from over-commercialization and the destruction of the pristine park. Mount Ranier would never be the same. This book has everything.

    There was so much beauty packed into the pages, poetry, scriptures, and natural animal sightings, it was a delight.

  • Kav

    You know how you meet a book and instantly know that you're destined to become bosom friends? The energy crackles from page to fingertip and you're hooked before you've cracked the spine open (not that I'm an advocate of spine cracking, mind you, that's just an expression.) Well, The Road to Paradise is that kind of book for me. So I was prepared to be spellbound but the humour took me totally by surprise. It's pure understated genius and I giggled my way through the first few chapters as Barnet

    You know how you meet a book and instantly know that you're destined to become bosom friends? The energy crackles from page to fingertip and you're hooked before you've cracked the spine open (not that I'm an advocate of spine cracking, mind you, that's just an expression.) Well, The Road to Paradise is that kind of book for me. So I was prepared to be spellbound but the humour took me totally by surprise. It's pure understated genius and I giggled my way through the first few chapters as Barnett cleverly sets the stage for one very captivating read.

    Margie is a tree sprite in human form while Ford is all no-nonsense mountain man. She's rapturously poetic about nature, can spout verse and quotes from renowned naturalists -- a book-taught city girl with a love for the great outdoors. He's as pragmatic as they come and doesn't have a romantic bone in his body so when some Senator's socialite daughter wants to play naturalist on his mountain for the summer, well, he's less than thrilled.

    And there's poor Margie, naively anticipating a warm welcome as she prepares to sit at the feet of the master. "Margie sighed. Ranger Brayden -- born on the mountain, untainted by human society. He sounded like the embodiment of Rousseau's noble savage. "I'm positive we'll get along splendidly." (p 3)

    Bwahahahaha! That untainted by human society bit? Yeah, that means he's kinda grumpy. And set in his ways. Unpolished. Short on patience. But he's..excuse the pun...stuck between a rock and a hard place. Because he has orders from the boss:

    "Find a way to make it work. Show her a good time. " He snorted, a smirk pulling at the corners of his mouth."Who knows? Maybe she can turn you into a gentleman."

    Ford gritted his teeth. "Unlikely." (p 9)

    The way their relationship develops is sheer brilliance. And if that was all there was to this story I'd be a happy reader but there's so much more! Like a truly despicable villain with absolutely no redeeming characteristics. It's pure joy to hate him. I know that sounds terrible but sometimes a reader wants to let loose some righteous indignation!

    And the piece de resistance is the powerful conversion story that blew me away with its imagery and heart. Simply stunning.

  • Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)

    The first thing that caught my attention about this book was its amazing cover. I collect the vintage-style postcards from national parks, sites, memorials, and cities that we visit on our road trips, and earlier this year I mounted them all on my living room wall :) Since I love national parks and I enjoy this author's writing I knew this would be a perfect book for me! The early 20th century setting in the Washington wilderness had a distinct feeling and I appreciated seeing the park and chara

    The first thing that caught my attention about this book was its amazing cover. I collect the vintage-style postcards from national parks, sites, memorials, and cities that we visit on our road trips, and earlier this year I mounted them all on my living room wall :) Since I love national parks and I enjoy this author's writing I knew this would be a perfect book for me! The early 20th century setting in the Washington wilderness had a distinct feeling and I appreciated seeing the park and characters in that era. There are so many great details from the wildlife to the conditions the rangers lived in, but they all were woven in naturally to the story, so I didn't feel like the plot was bogged down but kept a steady pace. Margie and Ford start out with a stark contrast between their views of the wilderness. Margie is an idealistic naturalist who loves the poetry written of nature and acquiring knowledge of the flora and fauna through reading books since she doesn't have any experience in the great outdoors. Ford, on the other hand, was raised in the mountains with his ranger father and understands the harsh realities of the terrain, the wildlife, and the weather. Over time Margie and Ford become acclimated to each other and learn the value of the other's perspective. While Ford strikes a healthy balance between practical knowledge and a new appreciation for the small wonders and great majesty of God's creations, Margie goes to the opposite extreme and discounts all her book learning as worthless when it comes to survival, which kind of bothered me. But her personality tends to see things in black and white so I guess that made sense. The villain popped up periodically to aggravate Margie and Ford and I was frustrated that they weren't productive in thwarting his plans and seeing a way around his slick strategies. My favorite part of the book is the sense of adventure in an untamed wilderness and how people have a responsibility to respect and preserve it while enjoying the challenge of discovery. And the romance, of course ;)

    (I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

  • Laura

    This was a sweet story about Margie, a young woman who grew up in the upper society, yet had a heart and desire for the simplicity and beauty of the natural world. It was easy for me to admire Margie because she reminded me so much of my younger self. She was a book learned botanist and admired God's beautiful world with excitement. I really enjoyed how this novel focused so much on the flora and fauna of Mount Rainer National Park. Now, I want to go see this National Park and scale to the summi

    This was a sweet story about Margie, a young woman who grew up in the upper society, yet had a heart and desire for the simplicity and beauty of the natural world. It was easy for me to admire Margie because she reminded me so much of my younger self. She was a book learned botanist and admired God's beautiful world with excitement. I really enjoyed how this novel focused so much on the flora and fauna of Mount Rainer National Park. Now, I want to go see this National Park and scale to the summit myself. ( Beware. Reading can be an expensive hobby. This book will make you want to fly all over visiting National Parks, make you buy or dig out all your old field guides, want to find the best backpack for day hikes and go shopping for a sweet pair of hiking boots.)

  • Sheri

    Karen Barnett's writing makes you feel as if you are right there in the forests, seeing the mountains, delighting in nature's beauty. As I read, I really felt transported to Mount Rainier National Park. Her writing instills courage, strength, and faith in the reader. You feel like you too can do everything that Margie does and that Ranger Brayden's path could just as easily be yours. This was a very enjoyable read for me, the book cover is simply gorgeous, and I can't wait to read more in this s

    Karen Barnett's writing makes you feel as if you are right there in the forests, seeing the mountains, delighting in nature's beauty. As I read, I really felt transported to Mount Rainier National Park. Her writing instills courage, strength, and faith in the reader. You feel like you too can do everything that Margie does and that Ranger Brayden's path could just as easily be yours. This was a very enjoyable read for me, the book cover is simply gorgeous, and I can't wait to read more in this series.

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