Walk with Esther Jantzen
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Join us on Sept 30, Thursday at 5pm for a virtual reading with Esther Jantzen regarding her book WALK.
Jamie Bacon is furious that his parents are making him walk 500 miles in Spain as part of their homeschooling plan. He’s especially disappointed that, unexpectedly, Dad can’t come along so he’ll be with just Mom and his sister Lily. But when Jamie meets a priest, Father Diego, on the plane to Europe and hears the backstory of the Camino de Santiago, he’s intrigued. And when he naively agrees to the request by two pilgrims to secretly carry a heavily taped envelope, unopened, all the way to Santiago de Compostela, Jamie is stuck with keeping his word and finishing the very long walk.
Multiple missteps plague Jamie on the Way of St. James (the English name for the pilgrimage). He injures Lily, causes a car-bike accident, loses the envelope and finds it again (twice), and gets the family lost. Like all Camino pilgrims, Jamie discovers every day on the route holds adventure, revelation, elation, and exhaustion. He meets quirky and kind and scholarly pilgrims; he learns legends and history. He sees marvels of architecture and explores castles, churches, and a cave. And he’s heroic, too, when he rescues a child from a charging bull, saves a puppy, prevents vandalism, talks his mother out of a panic attack, and more.
Jamie is thrilled when he runs into Dad at the 100 km marker and is able to finish the Camino with his father—though, again soon he creates another problem when he attempts to help the critically ill Lily.
Finally in the holy city of Santiago de Compostela, after the family performs traditional pilgrim rituals in the world-class cathedral, it’s time for Jamie to deliver that troublesome envelope. Finding out what he’s inadvertently carried the whole way produces Jamie’s biggest surprise. We’ll leave that undisclosed here. The book ends with Jamie on television, honest and humble, and Mom, Dad, and Lily laughing together as they view his triumph from their hotel room.
Esther Jantzen is a writer, a career high school educator with a doctorate in educational leadership, a snapshot photographer, and a three-time Camino de Santiago pilgrim. She grew up in India as a child of Mennonite missionaries, and is a mother and grandmother. For most of the last decade, she’s been a house-sitting nomad, though she sheltered-in-place through the pandemic in Albuquerque, New Mexico. WALK: Jamie Bacon’s Secret Mission on the Camino de Santiago is her first fiction, and one of the very few kids’ books about the Camino de Santiago.
Orca Books Co-op is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Walk with Esther Jantzen
Time: Sep 30, 2021 05:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 865 0112 7516
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Meeting ID: 865 0112 7516
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