Under the black cloud of a blizzard whipping Wisconsin, Lori Moyer drives West following the trail of the pioneers. Compelled by her belief in the Law of the Universe,“Take what you want and pay for it,” she careens on black ice over the mountains, scared out of her wits and lugging baggage of guilt for leaving family and friends. She thinks she is too old to start life anew, but finds relative safety in Eugene. When she is hired to teach children in the Cascades, Lori gets lost in a labyrinth of dilemmas she must traverse in the company of some colorful Oregon characters. The question of “Whose life is this anyway?” takes a dark turn when Lori leans on romance to save herself. Will luck be a lady? Will Ms. Moyer find her epiphany before it is too late?
With passion and sensitivity, Carnes explores one woman’s effort to teach what she most needs to learn, that her life is her own. Along the way, themes of facing fear, cultivating creativity, following bliss, surviving violence, finding strength in disaster, paying the toll for a road taken, and learning about love, resonate with the ideas her companions share on the way to self-actualization. This tribute to living fully, will leave readers laughing and crying, and wanting to know what is next in the journey of an optimistic fool, perhaps an overachiever, who learns to piece experiences together like stained glass, to create a masterpiece.