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Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Adult Book Review: Powder Days: Ski Bums, Ski Towns, and the Future of Chasing Snow

Author: Heather Hansman
Reviewed by Chloe Fuksa, Putnam Six Bookstore

Powder Days is the second book from author Heather Hansman, following her debut Downriver, covering the water crisis in the American West. Powder Days isn’t an action-packed, adrenaline-rush of a ski book to inspire your next daredevil backcountry chute. Instead, it’s a deeper, fascinating look at the many different facets of the ski industry – while yes, still including many great skiing scenes throughout.

At its core, the book is a memoir, but Hansman uses those personal experiences as jumping off points for exploring a range of topics. She talks about the history of skiing, how the number of skiers boomed after World War II but has been flat since the mid-1970s. She talks about psychology and what makes the brains of thrill-seeking ski bums tick. She talks about the science of snow and how the changing climate will affect future ski seasons. She delves into the income inequality of ski towns, the housing crisis facing mountain staff, the consolidation of resorts, and so much more.

It certainly helps to have some understanding of skiing prior to reading this. The author often uses ski lingo and certainly doesn’t slow down for definitions or explanations. The writing style also takes a little bit to get used to. The goal might have been beautiful, lyrical prose, but it can come across as clunky and abrupt. It is a well-researched book though. Hansman drew from her own life, but also crossed the country – from New England to Big Sky to Jackson Hole to Aspen to Santa Fe – while talking with all sorts of people – from the ski patrol to the bartenders to the resort managers to the researchers. Overall, it really is a striking look at skiing – the past, present, and future – while still being a fun, entertaining read.

Visit us in Sunset Plaza or call 580-297-5089 to get your copy of Powder Days today!

Chloe Fuksahttp://putnamsix.com
Chloe Fuksa is the owner of Putnam Six Bookstore, located in Sunset Plaza. Like many others in her hometown, Chloe was sad to see Hastings close and decided to open a local independent bookstore in October 2018. Chloe loves that books can comfort you and teach you, they can make you laugh and make you cry, they can transport you to faraway places and inspire your wildest dreams.



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