Quarantine Reads

After we finish the chores we’ve been putting off for the last few months, we are spending our quarantine snuggled up with a good book! There is so much history in our little Tahoe region that thousands have been written on the topic. Here are a few of our favorites. Click the titles for purchasing options and more information.

DESPERATE PASSAGE: THE DONNER PARTY’S PERILOUS JOURNEY WEST

You’ve never seen the Donner Party like this.

Drawing on fresh archeological evidence, recent research on topics ranging from survival rates to snowfall totals, and heartbreaking letters and diaries made public by descendants a century-and-a-half after the tragedy, Ethan Rarick offers an intimate portrait of the Donner party and their unimaginable ordeal. “The Donner Party is a story of hard decisions that were neither heroic nor villainous. Often, the emigrants displayed a more realistic and typically human mixture of generosity and selfishness, an alloy born of necessity.” – Ethan Rarick

THE INDIFFERENT STARS ABOVE: THE HARROWING SAGA OF A DONNER PARTY BRIDE

Can you imagine picking up everything at age 21 and traveling into the unknown in a wagon with your family and your new husband? This unique, true story is sure to make you appreciate modern times.

In the gripping narrative, author Daniel James Brown takes the reader along on every painful footstep of Sarah Grave’s journey. Along the way, he weaves into the story revealing insights garnered from a variety of modern scientific perspectives–psychology, physiology, forensics, and archaeology–producing a tale that is not only spell-binding but richly informative.

THE EXPEDITION OF THE DONNER PARTY AND IT’S TRAGIC FATE

Nothing could be more desperate than having to eat your friends and family in order to survive. Dive into this book for one of the more gruesome tellings of the Donner Party’s journey into and escape from Hell on Earth.

A WALL OF WHITE: THE TRUE STORY OF HEROISM AND SURVIVAL IN THE FACE OF A DEADLY AVALANCHE

Did you know the biggest (and deadliest) ski-area avalanche in North America happened right in our own backyard? In 1982, Alpine Meadows was rocked by a 700-foot vertical slide avalanche that took the lives of 7 and destroyed the Alpine Meadows Lodge. Another victim of this was a 22-year-old woman who was trapped under the snow…for five days! A Wall of White is the story of how this woman managed to survive buried in an avalanche and the team that, against all odds, made sure she came out alive.

TAHOE BENEATH THE SURFACE: THE HIDDEN STORIES OF AMERICA’S LARGEST MOUNTAIN LAKE

What secrets does Big Blue keep hidden from us? Tahoe Beneath the Surface has been a pillar of Tahoe literature since it was published in 1990. Author Scott Lankford starts at the beginning and chronicles the geographic and anthropologic history of the Tahoe Basin. This in depth look at Tahoe is sure to make you a feel like a true local.