The original item was published from June 4, 2021 2:28 PM to June 4, 2021 2:31 PM
Books have the extraordinary ability to take you anywhere you can imagine: across the globe, to strange new worlds, back in time, or flung far into the future. They can even take you back home. There is a unique feeling of “hey I know that place” or “that character reminds me so much of my dad/mom/next door neighbor/etc” that I only get when reading books set in Minnesota and North Dakota written by people who lived here.
So if you are in the mood to journey through our own neck of the woods, here are 6 regional reads to take you there.
A Fireproof Home for the Bride
by Amy Scheibe
Caught in a time bubble between a world war and the upheaval of the 1960's, 18-year-old Emmaline Nelson doesn’t have any say in her life or where it is headed. All her choices, especially who she will marry, are governed by her strict Lutheran parents. As her world opens up, she realizes that she longs to be something other than a farmer’s wife. But what can she do to escape the cage her parents have built for her? Peppered with charm and lush detail, this coming-of-age story of complicated family relationships, racial tension, and love is sure to transport you back to 1950’s Minnesota.
The Life We Bury
by Allen Eskens
Also in eBook and eAudiobook
A seemingly simple college assignment turns into deep dive to uncover the truth surrounding a brutal rape and murder. Tasked to interview a stranger and write a brief biography and his deadline looming, University of Minnesota college student Joe Talbert heads to a nearby nursing home to find a willing subject. There he meets Car Iverson--a Vietnam veteran and convicted murderer with only a few months to live--and Joe’s life is turned upside down. Part mystery and part character study, Eskens debut novel crafts believable characters with compelling interpersonal drama.
The Round House
by Louise Erdrich
Based on a number of true stories over the past 20 years, The Round House looks deeply into the fallout after a woman living on the Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota is attacked in 1988. As she descends into solitude and her husband seeks justice, their 13-year-old son is left alone to look for answers and try to save his mother. Born in Little Falls, MN, raised in North Dakota, and an enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, Erdich is one of the most revered novelists of our time and a brilliant chronicler of Native-American life and culture.
Hundred Miles to Nowhere: An Unlikely Love Story
by Elisa Korenne
When singer-songwriter, Elisa Korenne, took a month’s sabbatical from New York to be an artist-in-residence in “middle-of-nowhere” Minnesota, she didn’t intend to stay. And she certainly didn’t intend to fall madly in love with the local outdoorsman/insurance guy. Her story is an honest and heartfelt reflection on the ups and downs of their love story, culture shock, and what it means to live in community.
The Horizontal World : Growing Up Wild in the Middle of Nowhere
by Debra Marquart
From a very early age, Debra Marquart--the youngest and wildest of five children--knew she wanted out of the confines of her life on the family farm in North Dakota. Yet, returning home after years away for her father’s funeral, Marquart finds herself discovering a newfound respect for her father and her connection to the land she was so desperate to escape. Chronicling her rebellious adolescent life on the farm and subsequent exodus, Marquart’s wry understated memoir will resonate with anyone who has spread their wings but still calls the Midwest “home.”
Tag(s): romance, regional, recommendations, North Dakota, nonfiction, mystery, Minnesota, memoir, historical fiction, First Nations, fiction, coming-of-age, cold case