The Wallcreeper by Nell Zink:
Once I got used to the visuals, there seemed nothing odd to me about a rider whose sneakers almost dragged the ground. Stephen didn’t use a saddle, just a folded blanket to keep donkey hair from working its way through his pants. I head the rope and carried our stuff in a backpack, and we fit right in. Albania is the West Virginia of Europe. Single mothers there dress and live as men.