Once again, Dorset will be hosting its wildly popular Festival of Authors & Artists! Friday, June 24th 12-8. The schedule of authors (so far, and subject to change) is:
Molly Beth Griffin
John Reminger *Winner of 2011 Minnesota Book Award for Fiction!
Allan & Linda Anderson
Mary Ann Wendt
Cathy Wurzer – Yes, really!
Pat Helmberger & Sally West
Artists will be outside. Restaurants will be offering specials throughout the Festival. Don’t miss this great event!
Midwest Connections Picks June Picks:
My American Unhappinessby Dean Bakopolous $24
Protagonist Zeke Pappas, the director of a humanities institute in Wisconsin, is conducting an epic survey of American unhappiness, a project he considers his life’s work. In his quest to chronicle what makes us all so unhappy, Zeke also focuses his energy on finding his own happiness — he wants to find the perfect mate so he can gain custody of his orphaned nieces. Following steps outlined in a women’s magazine, the ever-optimistic Zeke identifies some “prospects”: a newly divorced neighbor, a coffeehouse barista, his administrative assistant, and Sofia Coppola because as Zeke says, “Why not aim high?”
Beyond the Trees: Stories of Wisconsin Forests by Candice Gaukel Andrews $26.95
Join nature writer Candice Gaukel Andrews as she traverses the natural and human history of some of the most pristine places in the Upper Midwest: Wisconsin’s state and national forests. Richly illustrated with color photographs by the author’s husband, John T. Andrews, and
other professional photographers, Beyond the Trees is an intimate visual portrait of these stunning landscapes. Archival images, informative sidebars, locator maps, and contact information for Wisconsin state and federal forests round out this unique book.
South of Superior by Ellen Airgood $25.95
When Madeline Stone walks away from Chicago and moves five hundred miles north to the coast of Lake Superior, in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, she isn’t prepared for how much her life will change. Charged with caring for an aging family friend, Madeline finds herself in the middle of beautiful nowhere with Gladys and Arbutus, two octogenarian sisters — one sharp and stubborn, the other sweeter than sunshine. As Madeline begins to experience the ways of the small, tight-knit town, she is drawn into the lives and dramas of its residents.
Twin Cities by Carol Muske-Dukes $18
The Twin Cities serve as geographical entry point for this exploration of how selfhood can be inescapably split over the course of a lifetime and exist in separate moments in time. Carol Muske-Dukes has won acclaim for work that marries sophisticated intelligence, emotional resonance, and technical craft. What distinguishes her poetry from her contemporaries
is her awareness of the complicated web into which the personal and the political, the familial and the feminist, are woven. This awareness deeply informs her latest collection, a book that plunges into the depths of both grief and joy with subtle precision.
Staff Picks We’ve added two new staff this year! Sophie at Sister Wolf Books and Jamie at Beagle Books! Here’s a bit from each! Jamie: “Hi! I'm new to Park Rapids. I have been a resident for a year now. In my previous life, I was a Spanish teacher in St. Paul for 12 years. I live in town with my husband John, daughter Olivia, and our two wild dingos (a.k.a. our lovable labs).” Sophie: “Hi, my name is Sophie and I just graduated from Park Rapids Area High School. In the fall, I will be attending St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota to major in Biology/Pre-Med and participate in cross country and track. I live on a lake with my dad, Nick, and my dog, Lucy, and in my spare time I like to wakeboard and enjoy a good book.” We hope you’ll have the pleasure of meeting them soon!
And now for reads!
Jamie: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen $14.95
Sophie: Wingshooters by Nina Revoyr $15.95
Sally: Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away by Christine Watson $15.95 Sally says: If you liked Little Bee, you'll want to read this book—a story of village life in the Niger Delta, where everyday life isaffected by the politics of oil. Twelve year old Blessing narrates the story in a distinctive and endearing voice. The Passage byJustin Cronin $16 Sally says: It's hard to describe this book: epic, philosophical, apocalyptic—whatever adjectives you use, it's a heck of a good story! The Land of Painted Caves by Jean Auel $30 Sally says: Years ago, one of my guilty pleasures was reading Auel's Earth Children
series. I'd given up on the last book ever being released--but it's recently come out! I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with Ayla and Jondalar and their lives at the beginning of time.
Jody: The Secret Power of Music: The Transformation of Self and Society Through Musical Energy by David Tame $16.95 The Elf Help books by Karen Katafiasz $4.95-5.95 each The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan $16
Excess Baggage: Getting Out of Your Own Way $15
by Judith Sills
Susan: Wingshooters by Nina Revoyr $15.95
Gail: Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman $16.95 Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins $8.99
Sherlock Holmes and the Ice Palace Murders by Larry Millett $14.95 Gail says: Larry is a Minnesota writer. In this series, Sherlock Holmes comes to Minnesota to help solve crimes.
A Bed of Red Flowers: In Search of My Afghanistan by Nelofer Pazira $15 Gail says: Nelofer grew up in Afghanistan. She gives us her story as well as the
history of the country starting with the occupation by the Russians. Last Hunter: An American Family Album by Will Weaver $24.95
Wingshooters by Nina Revoyr $15.95
61 Gems on Highway 61: A Guide to Minnesota's North Shore--From Well Known Attractions to Best Kept Secrets by Kathryn and William Mayo $9.95 Out to Pasture: But Not Over the Hill by Effie Wilder $9.95 Jason's Gold by Will Hobbs $5.99 Gail says: This is my very favorite young adult author!
Note: As far as we know, Gail still makes time for sleeping and eating
Linda: Once Upon a Time, There Was You by Elizabeth Berg $26
The Night Season by Chelsea Cain $24.99 Linda says: The fourth book in one of my favorite mystery series!
The Uncoupling by Meg Wolitzer $25.95
Wingshooters by Nina Revoyr $15.95
Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok $15 Linda says: When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn, life is not as they had imagined it. While her non-English speaking mother and herself toil in a sweatship owned by Kimberly's self-centered aunt, by day Kimberly lives another life, that of an exceptional
student. Kimberly hides the fact that she and her mother life in a vermin-infested apartment with an oven as their only heat source, and struggles to find her place in her new country. Note: This is the Sister Wolf Books book club choice for Aug. 3 and 4 at 9 a.m. I can't wait to discuss this gem of a book!
Kathy: Astrid and Veronika by Linda Olsson $14 Kathy says: A beautiful story of the friendship between two women.
The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder by Rebecca Wells $13.99
The Long-Shining Waters by Danielle Sosin $24 Jen says: I read enough of this book before the author came for a signing at Beagle so I would have an idea of the writing and the story. I intentionally did not read very far into it however because it always seems like I read a book by an author, then meet the author, and then wish I could go back and read the book (for the first time) after having met the author. It’s
been very rewarding (though a true exercise in discipline!) to do this. The book tells three stories: one about Grey Rabbit, an Ojibwe woman in the 1600s, one about a Norwegian couple, Berit and Gunnar, in the early 1900s, and Nora, a woman who owns a bar in 2000. All live by Lake Superior. The book is broken into many small chunks, revealing a piece of each story little by little. I worried that after reading about Grey Rabbit and then moving on to other characters hundreds of years later, I would know in the back of my mind that Grey Rabbit was already dead and not care about her. I needn’t have worried. I care just as much for Grey Rabbit as I do for the characters in later years. Intellectually I may know that Grey Rabbit would be gone when reading about Berit and Gunnar or Nora, but once a person has lived in a place, is she ever really gone? Reading Sosin’s Long-Shining Waters, we are all in a watery co-existence. The author says she wrote the book trying to answer the question, What IS it about Lake Superior that makes it so mysterious, powerful, and haunting? I don’t feel the same attachment to Lake Superior that the author does, but I am enjoying the book immensely.
Wicked Prey by John Sanford on audio $39.95 Jen says: Yeah, yeah, yeah, I was listening to one of these last month too. Usually I spread out listening to Sandford’s Prey books, but when I’d finished Phantom Prey, I wasn’t quite ready to take a break from protagonist Lucas Davenport yet!
Want to know the COOLEST new picture book? Not to worry, we happen to know what it is!
if rocks could sing: a discovered alphabet by Leslie McGuirk $15.99
It’s the alphabet, told in rocks! (My favorite is the W page – W is for whale).
Attention 1st and 2nd grade girls! (Well ok, boys can pay attention too). If you’re looking for a fun story with lots of adventure, travel, and some girl power, make sure you take a look at the Thea Stilton books! Thea is the sister of Geronimo Stilton, a newspaper-owning mouse in New Mouse City. Geronimo is a bit of a scaredy-mouse, but not Thea!! She’s brave, bold, and smart (thank goodness for Geronimo).
For middle grade readers (and their grown-ups!), Kevin Henkes’ Junonia $15.99 Returning to the beach
cottage—a cottage named Scallop—where she has always celebrated her birthday is a special occasion for Alice Rice. Who will see the first dolphin this time? The first pelican? What will have changed? Stayed the same? And will this be the year she finally finds a junonia shell? Alice's friends are all returning, too. And she's certain her parents have the best party planned for her. Alice can't wait. If Alice is lucky, everything will be absolutely perfect. Will Alice be lucky?
Also………. make sure to pick up Noah Barleywater Runs Away by John Boyne and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers $16.99
Eight-year-old Noah's problems seem easier to deal with if he doesn't think about them. So he runs away, taking an untrodden path through the forest.
Before long, he comes across a shop. But this is no ordinary shop: it's a toyshop, full of the most amazing toys, and brimming with the most wonderful magic. And here Noah meets a very unusual toymaker. The toymaker has a story to tell, and it's a story of adventure and wonder and broken promises. He takes Noah on a journey. A journey that will change his life.
Nicolas Flamel fans! The latest installment is IN! The Warlock (Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel #05) by Michael Scott $18.99
Book Group Reads Sister Wolf Books Women’s Morning Group
June 8/9 (same book being discussed both days – pick whichever day works better for you) at 9AM:
Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof $15.95