The Great Alone summary

The Great Alone summary

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah (Author)

A family in crisis, a young girl who struggles with both her family and her own survival, and much endurance, The Great Alone is a story set on America’s last frontier.

The time is 1974, when Ernt Allbright loses another job, at the end of his wit, and makes the impulsive decision of moving the whole family to the North. In hope of searching for peace, the family now settles in Alaska where spectacular wilderness will soothe their souls.

At any rate, the volatile and unpredictable nature of the father lands the family in an undesirable situation. At first, they feel consolidation from the hospitality of the local people and the sunlight that shines eighteen hours a day of the Alaskan summer. But then winter comes, and they know why it is that some must flee Alaska. Darkness suffocate more and more of the area every day, Ernt gets more and more fragile mentally, and the crisis inside the family mounts far more than the dangers that lurk outside. As every neighbor lives miles away, Cora the mother, and Leni the daughter of the family, learns that in Alaska, everyone fights on their own. So far from civilization, no one is there to save them.


A fragile family that is torn beyond endurance in an epic and cruel backdrop, The Great Alone tells the story of how a portion of Americans live. As grim as the plot sounds, the story celebrates the strength of women and the resilience of humans altogether. The book’s best feature is perhaps Hannah’s thorough illustration of Alaska, along with the romance at the story’s core. Amid the tragedy of the family, Leni finds her salvation.