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Examining love and a beloved building

Snow Country: A Copper Island Novel, One By Kristin Neva Snow Country is Kristin Neva’s debut novel. Neva was born and raised on Copper Island (the northern Keweenaw Peninsula), so she knows what she writes about. The novel is aptly named since it takes place during a long U.P. winter. The story begins in California […]

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Murder mysteries for May

Article By Tyler Tichelaar Mayhem on the Dead River By Bill Blewett Mayhem on the Dead River is retired Westwood High School teacher Bill Blewett’s first book. It’s a collection of five mysteries (novellas really) about small-town retired sheriff Bill Bennett and his three best friends who can’t resist staying involved in law enforcement, helping […]

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Celebrating National Poetry Month with U.P. poets

by Tyler Tichelaar graybeard memories: morning espresso musings By t. kilgore splake Several of t. kilgore splake’s volumes of poetry have been reviewed in this column, but this one is different. While it has the typical splake lack of capitalization, it is also written in paragraph form. At first, I thought it was a long prose […]

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Superior Reads

Lost in the Woods: Building a Life Up North by Richard Hill Richard Hill’s new book, Lost in the Woods, details his and his wife Judy’s building a log cabin in the U.P. For years, they had operated a business in Traverse City, but they missed their family in the U.P. so they purchased land […]

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Books honor difficult life experiences

A Last Chapter of the Greatest Generation: The Life and Family of Colonel Frederic A. Stone, M.D.—Aviator, Doctor, Missionary, and Friend to Humanity by Rev. Dr. Judson I. Stone A Last Chapter of the Greatest Generation: The Life and Family of Colonel Frederic A. Stone, M.D.—Aviator, Doctor, Missionary, and Friend to Humanity by Rev. Dr. […]

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Fishing and fantasy

Return to Enchantas By Corey LaBissoniere Return to Enchantas is the sequel to Corey LaBissoniere’s earlier book Land of Enchantas, previously reviewed in this column. In that first book, a group of modern-day teenagers found themselves transported from what is likely the U.P. to an enchanted world. The teenagers, save one, all managed to return […]

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Books offer environmental warnings and sustainability solutions

Sustainability from the Inside—Out: An eightfold practice in mindful living for personal and planetary peace By Angela Johnson, M.S. Sustainability from the Inside—Out is a workbook designed to help the individual live mindfully while also bringing about sustainable living changes within his or her community. Its author, Angela Johnson, teaches at Northern Michigan University in […]

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Illustrated kids’ books educate and entertain

Miss Colfax’s Light By Aimée Bisonette Illustrated by Eileen Ryan Ewen Miss Colfax’s Light is a children’s picture book based on the true story of Harriet Colfax, who, at age 37 in 1861, became lighthouse keeper for the Michigan City Lighthouse on Lake Michigan. Despite people thinking the job might be too much for her, […]

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Books offer look at varied artistic mediums

Kerouac and Brautigan. These sections require readers to know a bit about the authors to catch all the references. The opening Hemingway poem has splake taking a photo that has shadows hiding the apparition he sees of Hemingway coming to Seney to stalk trout again. A theme throughout these poems is splake wanting these authors […]

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Poems offer multiple perspectives and forms

Objects May Appear Closer by Janeen Pergrin Rastall Janeen Rastall is one of Upper Michigan’s foremost poets, and her newest collection does not disappoint. While poetry is largely open to interpretation, the title seems to suggest that the past is still present with us since the majority of the poems relate to aging and then […]

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Books reflect local history and its preservation

The Archives Project: The Surprising and Remarkable Story of the Origins and Development of Northern Michigan University’s Archives, 1966-1994 by Clifford F. Maier At first glance, a 350-page book on the history of the NMU Archives may not seem like the most absorbing reading, but as current archives director Marcus Robyns states in his foreword, […]

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Dead bodies keep readers guessing

by Vicki Fee Death Crashes the Party is the first book in the new “Liv and Di in Dixie” mystery series by Marquette author Vicki Fee. Full of Southern charm, a few Southern clichés and lots of surprises, this book is sure to win over fans of strong-willed women who aren’t content to sit back and […]

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Surprising visitors to Great Lakes region

by Tyler Tichelaar Myths of the Rune Stone: Viking Martyrs and the Birthplace of America David M. Krueger My first thought when I saw Myths of the Rune Stone, published by University of Minnesota Press, was that it would argue that Vikings had settled in the Great Lakes area long before Columbus. Instead, it explores […]

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U.P. poets represent genre well

the poet’s room by t. kilgore splake Calumet author t. kilgore splake has been writing poetry for many decades. In all, he is the author of 75 books of poetry, prose and photographs. He has been published in countless literary and art journals, and much of his writing has drawn attention to the Upper Peninsula. […]

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Books reveal how hard work, architecture shaped the U.P.

Company Towns of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula by Christian Holmes by Tyler Tichelaar Upper Michigan is full of the remnants of company towns—far more than many of us realize. In this new book, Christian Holmes gives information on all of them, and the book appears to be all-encompassing, although some of the chapters are very short—less […]

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