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Mountain Girl Paperback – October 5, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Born on a farm in North Carolina, Ken Byerly came of age in Wyoming and Montana. He attended the University of Montana on an athletic scholarship, played football and basketball and graduated in journalism. He returned to North Carolina college summers and measured tobacco acreage for the government on farms high in the hills. As editor of the Tidewater News in Franklin, Virginia, Ken won awards from the Virginia Press Association for editorial, news, feature and sports writing. He worked as a reporter for the Washington Post and left to travel for a year in Europe, where he lived in Paris and on the Island of Ibiza on meager funds. He carried with him an old Royal portable typewriter and began to write. Several of those early efforts survive today in Good Looking Bloke and Running Free, his two volumes of short stories. Ken specialized in politics and civil rights as a reporter for Newsday in the New York City area. He helped author the bestselling sex spoof Naked Came the Stranger and wrote the original book for the musical Cowboy, based on the life of Western painter Charles M. Russell, which played briefly in theaters east and west. Ken became a stockbroker in New York City, retired relatively early and with his wife, Priscilla, returned for several years to Montana, where he researched his novel Ghost Dance. He and Priscilla now live in Vermont. With her help, Ken completed a multi-year hike of the 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: AuthorHouse (October 5, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449025420
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449025427
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,512,325 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Born on a farm in Stokes County, North Carolina, Ken Byerly came of age in Wyoming and Montana. He attended the University of Montana on an athletic scholarship, played football and basketball and graduated in journalism.
As editor of the Tidewater News in Franklin, Virginia, Ken won awards from the Virginia Press Association for editorial, news, feature and sports writing. He worked as a reporter for the Washington Post and at age 28 took ship for Europe with meager funds, where he traveled widely, and lived in Paris and on the Island of Ibiza.
Ken specialized in politics and civil rights as a reporter and editor for Newsday in the New York City area. He helped author the sex spoof, Naked Came the Stranger, and wrote the original book for the musical Cowboy, based on the life of Western painter Charles M. Russell.
Ken became a stockbroker in New York City, retired early and with his wife, Priscilla, returned for several years to Montana. He and Priscilla now live in Vermont. Ken completed, several years ago, a multi-year hike of the 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail.

Visit Ken's website: http://kenbyerly.com/

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Keydet on February 20, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mountain Girl Review
Wyatt Durrette

Ken Byerly and I first "discussed" politics years ago when I was a college student and he was editor of the Tidewater News in Franklin, Virginia. I became an attorney, served three terms in the Virginia Legislature, and ran for Governor of Virgnia as a Republican in 1985. Ken moved on to newspapers in Washington D.C. and New York, left journalism to become a stockbroker, retired, moved to Vermont with his wife Priscilla and hiked the Appalachian Trail. I'm still an attorney in Richmond, Virginia, writing and speaking occasionally on political topics, and Ken and I still argue politics, though these days mostly by email.

I had a hard time putting down this book. Ken's novel Mountain Girl is at it's core a love story, with the backdrop of America's civil rights struggle, being young in Europe, the movie industry, journalism , politics, and the coffee houses of Greenwich Village. The attraction between Wade and Becky takes root in rural North Carolina and endures, through other loves and lovers for both, across two continents and for many years. Their relationship fascinates, intrigues and captures your heart.

It's incredible where the characters go and what they do. Ken takes you places you've never been and makes you feel that you were there. You catch glimpses of your own life, special moments when the coincidence of love and passion set sail, what is, what might have been.

I am grateful I read this novel. If you read it, I think you will share this sentiment. Don't miss it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Carolyn Pfeiffer on April 20, 2010
Format: Paperback
MOUNTAIN GIRL is the compelling love story of two young Americans, Wade Talbot and Becky Anderson, and their journey through the 1960s. From a rural southern town to the capitol cities of Europe, from an island in the Mediterranean to the hills of Virginia, Wade and Becky push and pull, prod each other, come together, separate, two restless young people in search of themselves and each other.

MOUNTAIN GIRL takes us to worlds lost and changed, to places marked in the heart and wistfully remembered. It is told through the eyes of an author who lived it and remembered and now asks us to live it with him.

Ken Byerly is a talented author. A joy to read. Come along for the ride.

Carolyn Pfeiffer, Hollywood, CA
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. P. Fox on February 26, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is a lovely novel, part coming of age, part love story, part civil rights era, part journalism, part
travelogue, part delightful compendium of mountain and country music, and more, all put together with an assured writing style that left this reader confident that the author knows what he's talking about, whether it's measuring a tobacco field in North Carolina in the 1950's or hiking the Appalachian Trail a few decades later. Becky and Billy T are real characters; they make mistakes, their lives and careers keep them apart, and it takes a long time for them to realize what's important, both in the world and between themselves.

I loved this book, and found it really hard to put down. It also made me wish that I'd traveled a couple of other
paths in my own life, and I guess that's one of the things a good story does. Kudos, as they say, to Ken Byerly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pat Holmberg on July 9, 2013
Format: Paperback
Review of "Mountain Girl" by Ken Byerly

Ken Byerly, in his "Mountain Girl", introduces us to his main character and takes us with him through close to a half century in 320 pages. He didn't start at the beginning, and didn't finish the story of that life at the end of the book. But what he did do was take us on a journey with Wade Talbot as he lived out those years.

It is both a love story and an adventure story - intermingled. We travel with Wade through the development of his career as a journalist. We meet his friends and lovers. We go to Europe for a time, and then observe the joy of a fulfilling marriage when he finally settles down back in New York. Later on we come to love the Appalachian Trail with him and his wife.

Mr. Byerly's writing style makes it easy for us to do all those things. He truly brings to life the people and places in the book - we feel that we know them and that we have been there. All that he accomplishes without being too verbose.

Never in the course of reading "Mountain Girl" did I yawn, was bored, or felt dutifully compelled to keep reading. The fact is, I could barely put it down. When I absolutely had to set it aside, I was always eager to get back to it.

I highly recommend "Mountain Girl" by Ken Byerly. You will love it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Keydet on February 17, 2013
Format: Paperback
Review by Wyatt Durrette, Trial Lawyer, Author 1985 candidate for Governor of Virginia:

I had a hard time putting down this book. When I am sleep-deprived for a couple of nights because of staying awake too late to read just a few more pages, I know I am reading a compelling story. Mountain Girl will keep you awake.

Ken's novel is at it's core a love story, with the backdrop of America's civil rights struggle, being young in Europe, the movie industry, journalism, politics, and the coffee houses of Greenwich Village. The attraction between Wade and Becky takes root in rural North Carolina and endures, through other loves and lovers for both, across two continents and for many years. Their relationship fascinates, intrigues and captures your heart.It's incredible where the characters go and what they do. Ken takes you places you've never been and makes you feel that you were there. I often had sensations of sitting at the table with Wade, tasting the wine and sharing the views. You catch glimpses of your own life, special moments when the coincidence of love and passion set sail, what is, what might have been. I am so grateful I read this novel. If you read it, you will share this sentiment and be the better for it. Don't miss it.
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