Author Fest celebrates local and regional writers
Writers of nearly every genre will gather Saturday, June 18 in downtown Park Rapids for Author Fest.
About 30 authors are currently slated to meet and greet readers from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Armory Square.
The impressive line-up of Minnesotan authors wielded their pens to write memoirs, fiction, non-fiction, cookbooks, Native American literature and children’s books.
Among the highlights are readings by Peter Geye, Lucie Amundsen and Karen Babine.
Geye’s new book, "Wintering," is a literary thriller set in northern Minnesota. It’s a century long story of father sand sons, love, exhaustion, forgiveness and mystery. His earlier books were "Safe from the Sea" and "The Lighthouse Road."
Amundsen’s family began a chicken farm, and she tells that story with great humor in her memoir, "Locally Laid."
Babine, a 1997 Nevis High School graduate, will read from her book of essays, "Water and What We Know." It won the Minnesota Book Award for non-fiction this year.
Local illustrator Dawn Rossbach and author Linda Henry will sign their children’s picture book, "The Cookie Garden."
Rossbach teaches art at Menahga High School. Henry founded "The Talking Stick" literary journal, and currently lives in White Bear Lake.
Park Rapids resident Lou Schultz has consulted with businesses around the world. His popular Park Rapids Enterprise columns have been gathered into a book, "Basic Business."
Other notable, visiting authors are as follows:
- Minneapolis writer Melanie Hoffert has written Prairie Silence, a memoir about growing up in North Dakota.
- Marley Kaul’s stunning new book, "Letters to Isabella: Paintings by Marley Kaul" presents 77 egg tempera works each accompanied by a letter written to his granddaughter. It offers beautiful, full-color reproductions of his paintings and is an intimate look at his artistic process and the unique personal and professional influences reflected in his work. Kaul is a retired art professor from BSU.
- Linda Grover recently read at the Library of Congress with Louise Erdrich. Her book, "The Road Back to Sweetgrass," is not available in paperback.
- Jeanne Cooney has written a trilogy of mysteries with recipes! The latest is "A Potluck of Murder and Recipes."
"Norman Loves the Lake," a children’s picture book by Debbie Hoven, recently won a Northeastern Minnesota Book Award.
- In retirement, Carol Bowman’s camera goes everywhere with her. "Tucked Under" is a book of photographs following a young loon from hatching in the spring to migrating in the fall.
- Rhonda Fleming Hayes’ new book is "Pollinator Friendly Gardening," a great resource for gardeners who wish to attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators.
- "Whispering Pines" by Elliott Foster is truly a Minnesota story, with universal appeal for anyone who loves the lake, the woods, the cabin – and the characters who inhabit those places.
- "The War Came Home with Him" is Cathy Madison’s heartfelt account of a family fractured by war and its awful aftereffects.
- Justin Holley’s latest book is "The Gullies," a supernatural horror.
- Sheryl Peterson is the author of children’s books, including "The Best Part of a Sauna."
- Midge Bubaney’s latest mystery is "Crow Wing Dead."
- Rebecca Kanner’s latest book, "Esther," is based on the biblical character. It will be out in paperback in a few days, but her publisher graciously has made it available for this event.
- "Dishing Up Minnesota" is Teresa Marrone’s new cookbook, and it celebrates the distinctive personality of Minnesota’s food culture and fresh, local ingredients, with 150 all-new recipes and beautiful photography showcasing the state’s farms, chefs and rich natural resources.
- MaryAnn Weidt has written another charming children’s picture book, "Mama Loved to Worry."
- Carla Pederson, has written "Forever Love Lifeless," a mystery, under the name Marie Katayah.
- Eric Bergeson has a special fondness for older adults, which shines through in his non-fiction work, "A Treasury of Old Souls."
- Tom Isbell, a professor of theater at University of Minnesota Duluth, will be in Park Rapids with "Capture," a young adult book.
- David Housewright’s mystery, "Stealing the Countess," is set in the Twin Cities.
- "Many Ways to See the Sun" is a book of meditations for children and families by Brooke Dierkhising.
- "The Bad Idea Book Club" proudly presents the first installment in a series of practical guides for doing the absurd. That installment is Peter Pearson’s book for children of all ages, "How to Eat an Airplane."
- "Woman River" is a novella by Doug Lewandowski, weaving together themes of belief, doubt, and revelation in traditional and unconventional ways.
- Connie Pease has written "Mrs. Covington’s Sunday School Dropouts," a hilarious and heartwarming novel about a Sunday School teacher who taught for 40 years and decides to track down her former students.
- Writing as Ambrose McGuine, David and Valerie Atkinson have produced "Snowplow Polka," a lighthearted tale of golden oldsters whose foibles keep the winter holidays in a comic state of confusion.
- Barbara Renner has written a series of children’s books about the adventures and misadventures of Lonnie the Loon.
- Connie Clair Szarke expresses remarkable empathy and insight in telling the stories of troubled others. Her novels include "Lady in the Moon."
- Eleanor Jane is the pen name of Barb Aschman. Her latest novel is "An Overdue Healing."
Author participation is subject to change. For an up-to-date schedule, visit