Veteran ski journalist and former ski bum Heather Hansman takes readers on a journey into the hidden history of American skiing, offering a glimpse into a subculture from the perspective of an insider.
... superbly reported and lyrical ... Hansman’s voice shines more here, an indication of how fully she is in her element ... the real importance of this book is apparent in the difficult-to-read yet clear-eyed reporting on the ski industry. Hansman’s gaze is unflinching as she calls out the white and wealthy niche market the industry caters ... It’s all so stark and depressing that toward the end of Powder Days, I wondered if it was even possible for Hansman to find something for us to be hopeful about. In the end, she does and she doesn’t. To find out, you’ll have to read this beautiful, aching, and honest portrayal of a skier wistfully longing for something she gave up and an industry that seems to be devouring its own soul. You’ll find some heroes hanging on to the reason so many of us started skiing in the first place, and a few pockets that are still managing to preserve the magic.
... a sparkling account of one woman’s passion and enduring love of powder ... Ms. Hansman’s descriptions of the life of the ski bum are evocative and endearing ... she captures the sport in its essence.
... often reads like an entertaining ethnography ... Hansman, a veteran ski journalist and the author of Downriver, serves as an apt guide through this wilderness: Her criticisms of the industry are blade-sharp, yet her passion for the sport shimmers on every page, with prose as smooth as a turn in dry powder.