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Breaking Wild (Paperback)
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February 2016 Indie Next List
“Outdoor and adventure enthusiasts will rejoice in Les Becquets' debut novel. In the spectacular and unforgiving wilderness of northwestern Colorado, elk-hunter Amy Raye Latour goes missing in a snowstorm at the beginning of winter. A search-and-rescue operation is organized and ranger Pru Hathaway and her rescue dog go to look for the missing woman. With alternating chapters focusing on each woman, Les Becquets spins a thrilling story about two strong and mysterious female characters whose resourcefulness and determination help them tackle incredible adversity. Breaking Wild is an extraordinary adventure story whose ending is as tense and suspenseful as anything I have ever read.”
— Pierre Camy (W), Schuler Books & Music, Grand Rapids, MI
When one woman goes missing in the Colorado wilderness, another becomes bent on discovering her whereabouts in this unforgettably moving, bestselling literary debut.
Driven to spend days alone in the wilderness, Amy Raye Latour, mother of two, is compelled by the quiet and the rush of nature. But this time, her venture into a remote area leaves her on the verge of the precarious edge that she’s flirted with her entire life.
When Amy Raye doesn’t return to camp, ranger Pru Hathaway and her dog respond to the missing person call. After an unexpected snowfall and few leads, the operation turns into a search and recovery.
As the novel follows Amy Raye and Pru in alternating threads, Breaking Wild assumes the white-knuckled pace of a thriller, laying bare Amy Raye’s ultimate reckoning with the secrets of her life and Pru’s dogged pursuit of the woman who, against all odds, she believes she can find.
About the Author
Diane Les Becquets is a faculty member and former director of the MFA Program in Fiction and Non-Fiction at Southern New Hampshire University. In addition to teaching creative writing, she has worked as a medical journalist; an archaeology assistant; a marketing consultant; a sand and gravel dispatcher; a copywriter; and a lifeguard, and is also an avid outdoorswoman. A native of Nashville, she spent almost fourteen years living in a small Colorado ranching town before moving to New Hampshire.
Praise for Breaking Wild
“A thrilling, gorgeous debut, a novel that explores the human capacity to persevere despite the wounds of the past and the perils of the present.”—Bret Anthony Johnston, national bestselling author of Remember Me Like This
“A powerful, visceral book about our own pasts and our own fears.”—Tana French, New York Times bestselling author of The Secret Place
“Quite literally mesmerizing...Prose that is lean, spare, and frequently poetic...What sets this novel apart is how deeply its author dares to venture into the psyches of her two unforgettable protagonists.”—Andre Dubus III, bestselling author of Dirty Love and House of Sand and Fog
“The pages practically turn themselves as the reader races through this harrowing and heart-wrenching tale, determined to discover how it all turns out.”—John Searles, New York Times bestselling author of Help for the Haunted
“Harrowing yet compulsive, this novel is as wild as the landscape it portrays, and it's just as dangerous.”—Wiley Cash, New York Times bestselling author of This Dark Road to Mercy
“You won’t put this one down, trust me. Diane Les Becquets brings to life the wilderness and the people who inhabit it in a way I’ve never read before.”—Ann Hood, national bestselling author of The Red Thread
“A visceral book building suspense from sensory details. As a page turning, two-pronged wildlife adventure, Breaking Wild is great fun. It may improve your survival skills, too.”—The Wall Street Journal
“[A] gripping thriller....Les Becquets puts her experience hunting elk with a bow to powerful effect.”—The Boston Globe
“A taut and thrilling narrative…Skillfully blending the emotional terrain of women’s fiction with a briskly paced adventure story.”—Booklist (starred review)
“Les Becquets’ prose is as spare, haunting, and nuanced as the wild landscape she brings to life…A transcendent, breathless exploration of the darkest depths of loneliness and the unbreakable human spirit.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“This is a powerful story of survival, wilderness field craft, and fractured relationships packed into a suspenseful plot with more than a few surprises.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Crisp, immersive...[Les Becquets] chronicles the harsh beauty of wintertime in the mountains while reminding us that people aren’t puzzles to be solved; they are fierce works in progress.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Plenty of suspense...Though this is fiction, readers who enjoyed the internal development of Cheryl Strayed’s Wild will find a lot to like here.”—Library Journal
“A tightly wound novel set against a background filled with details of hunting and outdoor life. The authenticity of the research adds to this tense story of human endurance and determination.”—The Denver Post
“With strong female protagonists and an outdoor setting that thrills over and over, Breaking Wild is a novel that will easily absorb your attention for hours.”—New York Journal of Books
“Haunting…A captivating story.”—Deseret News
“Les Becquets masterfully builds the feeling of suspense throughout the story in a slow burn that ends in a climax of explosive intensity.”—New Hampshire Union Leader