A few months ago I bought the book Gaining Ground by Forrest Pritchard. Of course I bought the Kindle edition and shortly after I started it, my Kindle broke. I was strongly opposed to Kindles before the idea of having hundreds of books in my bag at any given moment won me over. Now I am back in the books camp. Other than the binding, they don’t break. Even if they did you’d still be able to read. Plus there’s just something about having a book in your hands. But enough of my rant.
The thing about Gaining Ground is that it is truly one of those books that you can’t put down. I found myself pulling out my phone any time I had a spare moment and reading using the Kindle app. I loathe reading on my phone. A single paragraph barely fits on the screen. But Gaining Ground was worth the annoyance and the strain on my eyes.
Author Forrest Pritchard shares his agricultural adventures in a humble and hilarious story. When he graduated from college with a degree in literature and no great vision for his life, he returned home to take over his family’s farm which was $50,000+ in the hole. Despite growing up around farms and farmers, he knew little about running a farm and basically had to start from scratch. Humorous and heartbreaking moments abound.
This is the book about farming I’ve been looking for ever since I became interested in farming. I’m not much for public displays of emotion, but found myself laughing openly in the Moscow airport as I read about Forrest’s many mishaps. I knew Forrest succeeded in turning the farm around before I started the book. I’ve been following Smith Meadows (his farm) for some time. Still, that knowledge didn’t stop me from rooting for him as he struggled to make his.
Gaining Ground is without a doubt my favorite book of 2013.
If I haven’t convinced you to read it for yourself, I will leave you with this quote: “One has never truly lived until one has pulled alongside a school bus of bored children with a large goat on the back of one’s truck.” You know you want to hear the rest of that story.