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The Woods Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Length: 434 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews


Kirkus Reviews, February 2014:

Geigle brings to life the logging industry in the late 1930s in his historical fiction debut. 

Geigle's sweeping novel opens with a dramatic train derailment, which may have resulted from sabotage. Set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest logging industry, the epic narrative goes on to follow a large cast of characters devastated by the Great Depression, including Bud, the owner of the Skybillings Logging Company; Albert, a young worker; Clare, a union boss; and Lydia, Albert's mother and Clare's love interest. Bud tries to keep his company from going under by taking out loans to build a railroad trestle that would enable his men to work in a dangerous, remote area. Clare, a man of wealth and a champion for the poor, may not be whom he appears to be. Albert, whose late father co-owned Skybillings, searches for his place in the world as he tries to understand his fellow workers and the political games of the unions. Also in play is a larger story--at times hard to follow--of real historical events such as the disputes between the CIO and AFL labor unions.... Geigle handles his main characters well, each an interesting background and inner life. Standout moments come in the form of the daily struggles and comradeship of Albert and his co-workers, who talk--often in rough language appropriate to their work--of God, life and women. In the dangerous business of logging, these men must trust each other to stay alive. The novel captures the voice and character of each, yet brings together all the plot elements to create a suspenseful conclusion played out dramatically on a railroad trestle where people's true colors emerge and not everyone makes it out alive.

From the Inside Flap

Everything is broken. The foundations of society have been split wide by the Great Depression. Yet the people and their dreams persevere.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1573 KB
  • Print Length: 434 pages
  • Publisher: Polidais LLC (January 7, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 7, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00H59NIHQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,153,790 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Ronald Lee Geigle grew up in the Pacific Northwest. He attended the University of Washington, then headed for Washington, DC, where he has spent the past thirty years as a speechwriter, congressional aide, and public relations consultant. He worked for Washington State Senator Warren Magnuson and US Representative Norm Dicks, and founded the public relations firm Polidais.

"You learn a lot about people over that many years," says Geigle. "And you learn a lot about politics. It is always a surprise to me--despite all these years in DC--what those two do to each other."

Geigle makes politics a central part of his novel, The Woods, which tells a coming-of-age story set during a period of significant labor unrest in the Pacific Northwest during the late 1930s. As the nation emerges from the Great Depression, both haves and have-nots struggle for financial survival and, more importantly, to achieve their dreams in the face of adversity, danger, and political ambition.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
The Woods, is an amazing book - a sweeping examination of an era, an industry, and the political forces that swirled around both. But more than that, it is story of emotions and relationships that are timeless.

I describe Geigle, the author of, The Woods, as a landscape artist of the word. His descriptions are so finely layered and crafted, whole pages flew through my mind as if I was watching a movie. If I close my eyes now, I can see the trestle bridge that spanned the Three Sisters Ridge, high up in the Cascade Mountains, the depression era streets of the town of Seakomish, the remote Skybillings Logging Camp, the Shay locomotive chugging along, loaded with huge logs, the shantytown - Hooverville - on Seattle's waterfront.

This review would be remiss if it didn't highlight a few snippets of Geigle's descriptive voice. In every case it is the juxtaposition of images that is so riveting. The horizon swam from its blackness to a murky grey; St. Bride hitched up his pants over a melon belly; he scrambled easily over the matchbox chaos of fallen firs; the feathery blue water of Puget Sound; most people wrote him off as another meaty logger, uneducated and coarse; describing the city of Everett - a small, ugly fighter, never standing a chance in the fight; describing the Seakomish River - the white-water anger at the upper elevations churned clouds of pine needles; ravines so steep winter leaves only on the summer wind; an image of the loggers at work - stripped to their waists, the steam rose from their shoulders as the sharp curls of red, oily wood sprung outward from the ends of their saws, like spools of confetti in New York ticker-tape parades; and finally, Lummi Island - rising like a humpback whale out of the water.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Logging has been a mainstay of the Washington State economy for over a hundred years, and Mr. Geigle’s novel provides an up close peek at the passion and greed that gripped the industry in the late thirties. The economy is just recovering from the depths of the depression, and the struggle has begun to control the industry while prices and profits are low but the future potential is tremendous.
Set primarily in a small town in Washington’s Cascade Mountains, the novel showcases the determination of the various participants—loggers, unions, and company owners—and the violence that ensues in the struggle to control. The author has created a likable central character, the son of a logger who was killed in an accident years before, who as a young man struggles to establish his manhood and independence while maintaining his loving relationship with his frequently disapproving mother.
The novel is complicated; operating at many levels and succeeds at letting us in on the conflicting motivations and personalities of the characters on all sides while celebrating the powerful landscape of the Cascade mountain range and Western Washington. A mystery of just who is responsible for what runs through the novel as the small logging company at the center deals with sabotage and employee morale. The hero’s mother is also torn between the romantic intentions of a union leader and the company owner.
It all builds to a satisfying surprise ending. This is a novel that educates and entertains; I recommend it highly!
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Format: Paperback
Ron Geigle’s experience growing up in the Pacific Northwest shines through in his eloquent writing of Washington, both the rural and urban areas. I appreciate how easily he captures the beauty of the land in his story.

The Woods is a historical fiction novel rich with interesting and believable characters. It’s set in the 30s during a time of unrest with loggers and unions, including the not-so hidden political pulls as well.

A tragic accident on the logging site has the Skybillings crew uneasy about it’s future. The deaths of three men shake up the blue and white-collar men involved in the small logging company. One of the young loggers, Albert, unknowingly begins to unravel a mystery.

This is a deep and exciting story about a piece of American history. It’s well written and researched. I highly recommend The Woods for fiction lovers, especially those who lean towards the historical side.
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Format: Paperback
Details details details!!! This guy is a tried and true writer and it shows. The story is set during such a tumultuous time of US history, both in an economic and political way and the author captured the time period perfectly in my opinion. His writing style is very detailed (as I already noted) and descriptive, making me want to go back out west to visit again and soak in the landscape and beauty. He writes in a way that you easily hear the voices of the characters and feel their emotions in the moment. In that respect, it was a very easy read because it was a well put together story that flowed just right. Transitions were natural. Dialogue was realistic and not contrived. And I personally am fascinated by this time period - so it was a joy for me to read.

If you enjoy political or historical novels, I highly recommend picking up this book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not much of a historical novel. Too much bad detective work and fantastical crime. Why not just a historical novel about a logging company trying to make it during the depression? You don't need crime and romance, and an obvious villain. You don't need murders and dynamite to write a good story. Anyway, I read the damn thing and I wish I hadn't.
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