Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Homestead: Modern Pioneers Pursuing the Edge of Possibility” as Want to Read:
Homestead: Modern Pioneers Pursuing the Edge of Possibility
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Homestead: Modern Pioneers Pursuing the Edge of Possibility

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  237 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Joining her husband in the fight to create a home out of a rugged stretch of sagebrush, rattlesnakes, and sand in eastern Oregon, Jane Kirkpatrick uneasily relinquishes the security of a professional career; the convenience of electricity, running water, and a phone line; and, perhaps most daunting, the pleasures of sporting a professional manicure. But the pull of the lan ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published October 18th 2005 by WaterBrook Press (first published February 1st 1991)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Homestead, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Homestead

Oregon's Dry Side by Alan D. St. JohnWicked Portland by Finn J.D. JohnStubborn Twig by Lauren KesslerMurder & Mayhem in Portland, Oregon by J.D. ChandlerThe Oregon Desert by E.R. Jackman
Oregon Nonfiction
30th out of 59 books — 7 voters
Snow Falling on Cedars by David GutersonSometimes a Great Notion by Ken KeseyThe Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman AlexieHotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie FordThe Brothers K by David James Duncan
Pacific Northwest Books
417th out of 507 books — 314 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 444)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Recently moved to the land, I was very curious to read Kirkpatrick's move to her own plot of land. I always like these type of stories and seeing how the people who choose this way of life fare or even if they enjoy their choice to move back to the country.

Jane and her husband decide to pursue a dream of moving back to the land and doing a bit of farming. They find a good portion of land in the wilderness and even though its hard to get to and not really built up any way, they decide to move to
while it's mostly well-written, it's a little jumpy and hard to follow chronologically. the author puts different events together in ways that probably make sense according to her own emotional connection to the circumstances, but this detracts from the natural flow of time for the reader.

early on, the author awkwardly inserts little statements that aren't exactly foreshadowing, but more like hints about several disasters that will soon befall her husband and herself. it seems like a cheap way
I probably shouldn't even list this as a read book because I read less than 100 pages before I decided that I just didn't want to finish it. Maybe I've read too many books like this one and I just didn't want to experience another "adventure." What kind of turned me off was that the husband, who was almost 50 and had a bad back, wanted to go into the wild and build a house, etc. Seems like a very foolish decision on his part. Having experienced a lot of back pain in my life, doing something like ...more
Noelle M
The writing was sloppy, like maybe the memoir bored the author? After enough publications maybe attention to details isn't so important as you already have loyal readers? Also, I wonder about people who choose a building site 7 miles from a usable access road then instead of building a road, buy a single engine airplane? They planned maybe to airlift in building materials via Cessna? I identified with a lot of the problems of getting set up, and the many learning curve adventures, but it never o ...more
Author Jane Kirkpatrick tells of the life she and her husband carved out of the wilderness of Oregon along the John Day River, their passion for the land and a pioneering spirit come alive to the reader as she writes of the ups and downs of their life on 160 acres. People often ask "Who is your favorite author?", a question I usually answer with the last good book I read. Jane Kirkpatrick is the exception to that rule I'd probable pick a book of her's over any other author, giving her favorite s ...more
Georgia Herod
This is the story of Jane Kirkpatrick and her husband Jerry’s outrageous dream of creating a home in the Oregon wilderness, “seven miles from the mailbox and eleven miles from pavement.” They are an unlikely urban couple leave Bend and create a homestead—house, garden, vineyard, crops; bringing in electricity, phone lines, and drilling for water—fighting the elements of nature and mankind. This is a moving adventure by modern pioneers, a memoir full of courage, hard work, disappointments, self-q ...more
I really struggled to finish this book. It became a little bit more interesting toward the end, when the chapters revolved more around farming and cattle, etc. The first half (at least) of the book was frustrating. The high-anxiety damsel in distress writer companioned with an eccentric man-of-the-house husband made for an irritating duo in my opinion. I felt like I was reading her diary, and she insisted on self-deprecating herself in some way for everything that went wrong. I will admit that i ...more
Liz Bonnet
Interesting modern story of homesteading couple in their 50's batteling with weather, land issues, snakes, floods, fire, government regs and setbacks in Eastern Oregon. Joining her husband in the fight to create a home out of a rugged stretch of sagebrush, rattlesnakes, and sand in eastern Oregon, Jane Kirkpatrick uneasily relinquishes the security of a professional career; the convenience of electricity, running water, and a phone line; and, perhaps most daunting, the pleasures of sporting a pr ...more
The story of Jane and her husband's homesteading a remote piece of land along the John Day River in Oregon. Now I see where her wisdom comes from--persevering through difficulties.

"Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness, concerning all acts of initiative and creation. There is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sort
Jane K is one of my favorite authors. This book is her story about settling in Oregon and building their home from the ground up. They often ran into "Murphy's law" whatever could go wrong, does and more. I was amazed at Jerry and Jane's tenacity and endurance in the face of their opportunities. They also built strong and close friendships for a lifetime. They have lived the "American dream". A wonderful read!
If I had stopped maybe 75 pages before the end I might have only given this memoir 3 stars - in parts the detailed descriptions of their challenges were a bit tedious for my taste. It was in the wrap up where I felt a greater connection and empathy for the people who undertook this amazing challenge and adventure.

One aspect of this book that I enjoyed was the markings that my daughter Marissa had made in it as she read it (before me). It was fun/interesting to see which passages were significan
I cannot even express how much I love, love, loved this book! It is definitely one of my Top 10 books! It was beautifully written and oh, so amazing!

I've read other Jane Kirkpatrick novels and suggest reading this one first as you'll get a feel for the author, her life, her struggles and her love for her characters/plots/stories.

I borrowed this book from my Mom, but will be purchasing my own copy for my library. It's THAT good!
Although this book had an interesting premise, I found it too slow moving. Also, I haven't read any other books by this author so I just wasn't invested. She and her husband bought 160 acres north of Bend, OR in 1979 on the John Day River. There was no electricity, no running water and no house, but they moved in anyway. They spent the next few years bringing that stuff in. Then I skipped ahead to the ending to find a bit of resolution.
This book was hard to get started and difficult to follow at times. As I kept reading though I did get interested. I don't think I could ever do what Jane and her husband did by homesteading in such a rural place, but I see how their choices led to touching so many others' lives. God does have a plan for everyone's lives. In conclusion while difficult to read at times it provided a good discussion for our book-club.
Jane Kirkpatrick is one of my favorite authors, so when I saw this memoir of her experiences homesteading in Oregon with her husband, I decided to buy it. It was O.K., but, in my opinion, not as good as her historical Christian fiction books are. Some of it was very slow moving, and parts were very fast paced. It was interesting enough for me to finish, but probably not great enough for me to recommend it to others.
A fascinating story that reads like a novel, with setbacks galore. Their perseverance was a inspiration to me as we were undergoing a house remodel while I read it. Loved the details of the area, and her honesty about her feelings and the difficulties they encountered as they made a home in the Oregon outback.
Lots of photos included, which added greatly to the story.
Dec 31, 2007 Wendy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys Christain books, homestead stories and tear jerkers
I had read other historical fictionn books by the author when I stumbled across this one. It was the best book I read all year. She writes so realistically and honestly. I could see and feel everything she wrote. This book inspired me to handle my own trials a lot better. Her story is one that will thrill, entertain, inspire and teach, all at the same time. Awesome read!
What an awesome pioneer story. This is a modern pioneer story about a couple who decided to make a life of it in a place called Starvation Point. This story has it many ups and downs experienced when starting a new life. All though there has been many ups and downs the couple believed in God, the generosity of neighbors and the struggles with a family.
First of Kirkpatrick's I've read. I'm unlikely to buy more but if I stumble on one I'll at least thumb through it. Her fiction may be completely different, but I didn't find that she had a deft touch for writing memoires. A little too much recounting of "we did this and then we did that" followed by sappiness. Just not much depth to the book.
If you have read any of Jane Kirkpatricks books then this is a good way to get to know Jane, who wrote this book about her modern day homesteading on the John Day River in Oregon. I am familiar with the area that Jane and her husband "settled" so I was able to envision many of the events that she writes about.
The story of 2 people making a home for themselves in the wilds of east Oregon should be right up my alley, but the many references to their faith and "divine intervention" in the first 2 chapters helped me understand very quickly that I would be very irritated with these people in a very short time.
I thought this book was faith filled and funny. The author talks about moving from a city life and manicures to living miles from the nearest road with no electricity. I enjoyed reading this book, and would recommend it to anyone interested in homesteading.
Roscella Beck
Interesting book in Oregon telling of the attmpts made to build a homestead. So many mishaps and struggles - plus costly to body and finances. It became tiresome reading. Took place on the John Day River in Oregon not far from where I live.
I liked the book because of the community and the people that step in to help and work so hard to keep the road clear and help the Kirkpatricks survive on the land. Yes, it's a memoir and a little pieced together, but I found charm in that.
This book is a well-written account of homesteading. I really would give it more like 3.5 stars. Parts toward the end got extremely repetitive and drawn out as though Kirkpatrick could not figure out when or how to end the book.
This is an autobiography that read like one of Kirkpatrick's historical fiction books. It's a wonderful glimps into Kirkpatick's life.
This was a good book, but I think Kirkpatrick's writing got a little annoying after a while. Perhaps I'm just too pessimistic!
Oct 17, 2008 Juday marked it as to-read
I will have to find this book, I don't know if it can be better than her others. I will read it to find out!
Laura Holland
Wow! I was exhausted after reading this story. True story - the Kirkpatricks have got to be nuts!
True story of empty-nesters homesteading in central/eastern Oregon in the 1980s.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 14 15 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • More Than Ordinary: Enjoying Life with God
  • God Can't Sleep: Waiting for Daylight On Life's Dark Nights
  • The Hour That Changes the World: A Practical Plan for Personal Prayer
  • Mark for Everyone
  • 10 Steps to Knowing God, a Discipleship Guide to Developing an Intimate Relationship with God
  • God's Gift to Women: Discovering the Lost Greatness of Masculinity
  • True Community: The Biblical Practice of Koinonia
  • Authentic Beauty, Going Deeper: A Study Guide for the Set-Apart Young Woman
  • The Intimate Merton: His Life from His Journals
  • Without Buddha I Could not be a Christian
  • Who Is This Man?: The Unpredictable Impact of the Inescapable Jesus
  • Listening for Coyote: A Walk Across Oregon's Wilderness
  • Dancing through Fire
  • Love Has a Face: Mascara, a Machete and One Woman's Miraculous Journey with Jesus in Sudan
  • Get Your Act Together: 7-Day Get-Organized Program For The Overworked, Overbooked, and Overwhelmed, A
  • The Fathers of the Church: An Introduction to the First Christian Teachers
  • Start Your New Life Today: An Exciting New Beginning with God
  • The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door
Kirkpatrick brings us a story of one woman's restoration from personal grief to the meaning of community."
More about Jane Kirkpatrick...
The Daughter's Walk All Together in One Place (Kinship and Courage Series, #1) A Name of Her Own No Eye Can See (Kinship and Courage Series #2) A Clearing in the Wild (Change and Cherish Historical #1)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »