A Walk to the End of the Earth

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In A Walk to the End of the Earth, Jeffrey Kendall describes how his desire to be closer to God prompted him to travel the El Camino de Santiago on a pilgrimage. Jeffrey, a Catholic priest in the Diocese of Charleston, despised his experience as a priest and did not want to continue working as one. He hoped his journey would lead him to his next move. However, he encountered several difficulties along the way. For one, his odd relationship with a heroin addicted prostitute put him in various awkward circumstances. He also went through starvation, getting lost, losing his possessions, painful recollections of his abusive past, loneliness, and remorse for leaving his cats. Despite the numerous hurdles that kept emerging from his past and threatened to ruin his will to live, Jeffrey tried his best to find out what his future held. Did Jeffrey’s pilgrimage lead him to the answers he seeks?

The author draws the reader in by describing his mental condition, path, some of the individuals he encountered, and other relevant details about his voyage. Along with following his advancement on the physical aspect of his journey, we also get to follow his thought-provoking relationship with God and religion. Jeffrey delves into various Bible stories, religious-themed historical anecdotes, and serious topics and questions that left me lost in thoughts, including, “How do I forgive God for calling me to be a priest in an abusive Church?”

I disliked that there is no comprehensive introduction to the author’s journey and the motivation behind it. The conclusion is similarly rushed and lacking in important information. Also, various characters in the novel are introduced with little information about their personalities.

Jeffrey’s internal struggle and competing aspirations are a reflection of the reality of a mind that is always thinking and seeking the optimal course of action. At times, he erred on the side of following his flesh and pursuing his sexual impulses, some of which are rather explicitly described. He also exhibits other emotions, such as guilt, anger, sadness, and frustration.

The slow tempo of the book perfectly depicts the calm ambiance of a lengthy walk. As you read Jeffrey Kendall’s picturesque, intelligent, and generously transparent memoir, you may anticipate encountering various surprises, deep questions, challenging situations, and pleasant personalities. Your thoughts will be provoked by its profound questions, and your desire to enjoy long walks in rural settings will be increased by its nuanced descriptions of such experiences. Readers who feel lost on their current path will find A Walk to the End of the Earth to be both relatable and enlightening.

Reviewed By:

Author Jeffrey Kendall
Star Count 4/5
Format Trade
Page Count 320 pages
Publisher Unmuzzled Ox Publishing LLC
Publish Date 18-Feb-2023
ISBN 9798987325209
Bookshop.org Buy this Book
Issue April 2023
Category Biographies & Memoirs