The most amazing thing about this book was that it read like a story. A lot of non-fiction books recapping moments in history tend to read like school books. Every once and a while highlighting a story then listing dry facts. Timothy Egan did not do that. Every word, while informative, is rich and enticing, keeping you hooked.
Another thing Egan did really well was keeping thing easy to understand. There were a few moments where I was a little lost, but for the most part everything was clear and allowed me to fall into this strange world that actually existed less than 80 years ago.
One thing that drew me into this book was that this was about my grandparents generation. They weren't in the Dust Bowl, but a fair share of this book is about the Depression itself, and that effected everyone in the country. The fact that this massive drought occured at the same time of the Depression is almost unbelievable. But even if you don't have any personal ties to the Depression or the Dustbowl, this book will still have something that grabs at you.
In a way the fact that it almost reads like a novel kind of hurts the truthfulness of the book. It detaches you in a way and you have to keep reminding yourself that this was real, this did really happen, people suffered and died even. Egan does ground you in the end with an update of what's going on today. The book wakes you up that man can't do anything he wants to the earth. The earth is a very delicate creature that needs to maintain a balance that man can't control.
This book is left as a reminder of what happened as the people who lived it are now reaching the end of their long journey. This book is an honor to them, sharing their story with everyone. Pick up this book and hear their memories, as cheesey as it sounds it's worthwhile.