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Publisher's Summary

The beloved actress and star of One Tree Hill, White Collar, and Lethal Weapon, Hilarie Burton, tells the inspiring story of leaving Hollywood for a radically different kind of life in upstate New York with her husband Jeffrey Dean Morgan - a celebration of community, family, and the value of hard work in small town America.

While Hilarie Burton’s hectic lifestyle as an actress in New York and Los Angeles gave her a comfortable life, it did not fulfill her spiritually or emotionally. After the birth of their first son, she and her husband, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, the star of The Walking Dead, decided to make a major change: they bought a working farm in Rhinebeck, New York, and began a new chapter in their lives.

The Rural Diaries chronicles her inspiring story of farm life: chopping wood, making dandelion wine, building chicken coops. Burton looks back at her transition from urban to country living - discovering how to manage a farm while raising her son and making friends with her new neighbors. She mixes charming stories of learning to raise alpacas and buying and revitalizing the town’s beloved candy store, Samuel’s Sweet Shoppe with good friend Paul Rudd and his wife, Julie, with raw observations on the ups and downs of marriage and her struggles with infertility. Burton also includes delicious recipes that can be made with fresh ingredients at home.

Burton’s charisma, wide eyed attitude, and fortitude - both internal and physical - propels this moving story of transformation and self-discovery. The Rural Diaries honors the values and lifestyle of small-town America and offers inspiration for anyone longing to embark on their own unconventional journey.  

Supplemental enhancement PDF accompanies the audiobook. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2020 Hilarie Burton (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Rural Diaries

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amazing !

I loved it ! I laughed and cried! great book ! a must read !

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Rich actor trying to be interesting

Honestly? I wanted to love it. I really did. But straight up it’s just a rich actor who thinks her life is more interesting than it is. I didn’t find it genuine. It was like she was trying to glamorize something that is a trend. Wouldn’t recommend to anyone.

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Heart warmed

I absolutely loved this book. It was so wholesome and heartwarming. I loved all the stories and how vulnerable you allowed yourself to be.

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Refreshingly honest

love the recipes, the new farm stories (relatable) and the beautiful way it was written (read).
New fave

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Great listen with a fresh outlook

Really enjoyed listening to Hilarie speaking about her life journey,.It is so inspiring and oved every part of it. Would definitely recommend!

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Makes you want to leave it all and buy a farm!

I loved every minute of this book. As someone who has talked about buying property with my significant other this was even more inspiring. From Hilarie's personal struggles and successes, this is such a relatable and bingable book. I read it in 3 days! I couldn't put it down! You really feel for her with her personal pain, struggles with life and relationships and triumphant personal growth. Highly, highly, highly recommend.

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a visit with an old friend

Listening to Hilarie recount her story I laughed, I wept, and I learned. The way she talks make you feel like your catching up with an old friend. I've been a fan since OTH and this made me appreciate her even more... as a mother....a wife.... a daughter and a friend

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great heartfelt stories full personality

love this book. I have known of Hilarie Burton since my early OTH days, and loved JDM since seeing him on screen as Denny. this was such a thoughtful glimpse into a depth of personal journeys and strife entangled with grit. I loved the whole thing, start to finish and got lost in the wonder that this was someone's life and story to share. I am hopeful for more recipes, some dandelion wine in my future, and a cliff hanger about Martha Stuart! I'm glad to have downloaded this book as an easy listen, and enjoyable 3 day long weekend binge.

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  • Zoe
  • 2021-04-08

Simply Magic

Hilarie! I can’t thank you enough for sharing this story with the world. I rarely find a book these days that makes me feel so many emotions all at once in the best of ways. Only one chapter in I found myself buying the physical copy to read (and laugh and cry) along. Do yourself a favour and listen to this book, you will not be disappointed!

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Wonderful

This was everything I needed.
Hilarie is a badass and an inspiration.
Thank you for sharing!!

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  • julie
  • 2020-05-11

Enjoyed Her Story

I did not know about Hilarie Burton or anything of her life or that she existed. Enjoy listening to people talk about their lives. Her book randomly came up and I listen to the sample. I enjoyed what she had to say. I love hearing about farm and their adventures of life. I also like when I hear about her as a person. She seems like someone who is true to heart.
We learn a lot by listening to raw content of others’ lives.

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  • Christina Churchill
  • 2020-05-14

It’s like listening to your best friend

Being a fan of Hilarie and her approachable personality on social media made me purchase with no question. Living in the same Hudson Valley as her, I appreciate the love and admiration that she has for her farm and her community. Listening to her tell each part of her story was like talking to your best friend/spirit animal. It’s a good read/listen with the added bonus of some of her recipes too. Buy this book!

9 people found this helpful

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  • RVA Meg
  • 2020-05-09

Blown Away at the Honesty

I know now that all Burtons are liars 😜, but I am so blown away with how raw and honest this book was. At first, I just wanted to listen to one of my favorite actresses (OTH & White Collar & Christmas Movies-what’s not to adore?!) tell her story, thinking it would mention our shared home state of Virginia, give some gritty details about best and worst cast members, and talk a little about the farm I’ve seen on instagram. Little did I know, I’d be transported to a place where I’d fall in love with real life people and animals she talks about, and have my heart break over and over again. Hilarie’s story is like a raw, honest Christmas movie, but not in a “everything is perfect” way. She shares her love, loss, and deepest feelings with us in this book in such an amazing way, and I’m so grateful for her words. Her daughter’s birth announcement rocked me, as today is the day before another Mother’s Day where I’m not yet able to celebrate with a baby of my own. I’m so thankful for this book, Hilarie’s honesty, and her bravery in telling her full story. Highly recommend this to anyone.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-05-11

I recommend it 💯 %

So amazing and interesting. The narration is sooo good and lovely. I really enjoyed it

4 people found this helpful

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  • Nicole Nenna
  • 2020-05-08

Mischief Farm? More like Casablanca in the Era of Coronavirus....

I can’t say enough about how amazing this book is! It is incredible to find someone who writes in a way that you feel like you’ve found your kindred spirit! I was too impatient to wait for the book to arrive in the mail during this pandemic so I opted for the audio version from audible! I couldn’t stop listening. It was on during my drive to and from work and even during the day on my desk. And now, I am planning to buy a hard copy to turn my fingers through the pages as I read this over and over again! The love story for her family and her town is so symbolic and left me with hope that every story truly finds its silver lining!

4 people found this helpful

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  • JEN
  • 2020-06-14

nice story, a bit much

I did enjoy this, but it made me believe that Hilarie is a bit needy and at the same time has the "I'm here now everything will be perfect " vibe. I don't know, the story made me happy and than it made me shake my head. I'm happy that they have a beautiful family and life, but with that, she did a lot of complaining and if she wasn't complaining she was saving everyone she met. Just a bit overbearing.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Christon Haydon
  • 2020-05-15

The Rural Diaries Review

I sat and listened to the entire book today while working from home. I caught myself burst out in laughter at times while grading papers. Taking a break for a second to write down a recipe. This book is relatable to me because my family lives on a family ranch/farm with cattle, wild deer and a friendly fawn that my son rescued when he was 5, and the land backs up to the river where we fish. My husband has the green thumb so I’m gonna try to grow stuff with my new confidence from the info in this book. This may be a book I will give to all our adult kids for Christmas.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-05-11

Magical!

Loved everything about this book! Hilarie is amazing and real! Loved her story and family. Made we want to buy a farm and live the life she and her family have. Highly recommend!!

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  • Megan
  • 2020-05-10

Remarkable

I needed this breath of fresh air!! A story about love, loss, growth, and all things earthly. It doesn’t hurt that it’s written by my favorite actress @hilarieburton. Hilarie’s a great writer, and an even better story teller. As I listened so intently to her voice telling her own life’s stories thus far, I found myself crying tears of joy, and at times of sadness. My heart filled with joy through her greatest moments, and heartache through the saddest. I could relate a lot to Hilarie. I have seen many of the trials she has faced in my life and it was so difficult to come out of those places for me. I have seen my own joys as well. It was her bad ass strength and her yearn for something better that reminded me of the place I came from to where I am now. She has reminded me to enjoy the simple things in life. To breath and to remember that life will always be a steady pace of ups and downs, but joy can always be found even in the darkest moments. She has reminded me, that I too am a bad ass woman, that I can rise up from the shit that I’ve been through. To not waste a single moment to chase the dreams I’ve been wanting to pursue and to live for the NOW!! This is my thank you letter. Thank you Hilarie Burton Morgan, for pouring out your heart and soul into such an amazing book. Opening my eyes to a “your not alone” kind of world. It has given me new perspective and a new found hope. You, have given me strength through your stories. You’ve planted a MF seed in me, and I am going to hold on to that seed and nourish it forever. Rhinebeck is a magical place, with magical people, who love and nourish each other. I see that. I now want to walk into “Samuels Sweet shop” and smell the fresh hot chocolate being made, to sit on the red bench at the entrance. I want to eat a flower, and make my own pickles. I want to plant all the seeds and get spit on by an alpaca just to say that it happened. Mostly, I have never wanted to hug a person I have never met but feel like I’ve known most of my life more than I do right now. Hilarie you are incredible, fearless, beautiful, strong, and have a heart of gold!! “Your art matters, it’s what got me here!” 😘
with love, Megan from Georgia
If you want to be encouraged, empowered, and loved on through a book, buy this one. Listening to it is even sweeter. You will be blessed forever. I have. 💕

3 people found this helpful

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  • Michelle Blesi
  • 2021-05-19

Real, relatable and candid

Thanks for sharing your story and keeping it real! Inspiring to lose who have similar situations.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kat
  • 2021-05-08

really enjoyed this!

great listen ♡ I enjoyed every min of it. very interesting to hear the path of mischief farms and the family!