Thursday, May 29, 2008

Ellen Baker in Brainerd on Monday

This week on Realgoodwords you'll hear a conversation with Grand Rapids native Ellen Baker about her novel "Keeping the House". Ellen is kicking off the Brainerd Public Library's Brown Bag lunch series on Monday June 2nd at noon.

Here's a synopsis of "Keeping the House"
When Dolly Magnuson moves to Pine Rapids, Wisconsin in 1950, she discovers all too soon that making marriage work is harder than it looks in the pages of the Ladies’ Home Journal. Dolly tries to adapt to her new life—keeping the house, supporting her husband’s career, fretting about dinner menus. She even gives up her dream of flying an airplane, and instead tries to fit in at the stuffy Ladies Aid quilting circle. Soon, though, her loneliness and restless imagination are seized by the vacant house on the hill, and, as Dolly’s own life and marriage become increasingly difficult, she begins to lose herself in piecing together the shocking story of three generations of Mickelson men and women: Wilma Mickelson, who came to Pine Rapids as a new bride in 1896, and fell in love with a man who was not her husband; her oldest son, Jack, who fought as a Marine in the trenches of the First World War; and Jack’s son, JJ, a troubled veteran of World War II, who returns home to discover Dolly in his grandparents’ house. As the crisis in Dolly’s marriage escalates and she seeks answers from JJ’s stories of his family’s past, KEEPING THE HOUSE moves back and forth in time, exploring themes of wartime heroism and passionate love, of the struggles of men with fatherhood and war, of women with conformity, identity, forbidden dreams and love. Rich in period atmosphere and in 1950s detail, KEEPING THE HOUSE illuminates the courage it takes to shape and reshape a life, and the difficulty of ever knowing the truth about another person’s desires. KEEPING THE HOUSE is an unforgettable novel about small town life and big matters of the heart.
Other authors that will be speaking this summer in Brainerd:
June 2-Ellen Baker, Keeping the House
June 9-Jim Klobuchar, Pieces of My Heart
June 16-Ann Reed, Sesquicentennial Songwriting Tour
June 23-Catherine Watson, Home on the Road: Further Dispatches from the Ends of the Earth
June 30-William Cope Moyers, Broken: My Memoir of Addiction and Redemption
July 7-Jerry Mevissen, Broken Hart: Small Town Short Stories
July 14th-Rusty Schmidt, Rain Gardens
July 21-BookWomen, Minnesota Women's Press
July 28-John Fredricksson, The Gunflint Cabin


VickiRR said...

Another phenomenal book!! Heidi has the best taste in books - this one was one of those "can't put it down" books.

Heidi Holtan said...

Thanks Vicki!