Books

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Prisoner 88 is among a handful of historical fiction titles nominated for this year's Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award. It's the story of 10-year-old Jake Oliver Evans who, in 1885, is sentenced to five years in the Idaho Territorial Penitentiary for fatally shooting a man who threatened his father.

In 1972, when asked his opinion of the French Revolution’s effect on world history, Chinese Foreign Minister Chou En Lai responded, “Too soon to tell.”

A long view, to be sure, but many historians prefer it. Only time provides the perspective necessary for genuine understanding.

Stephen Martin

Orville Gibson went missing before dawn on the morning of New Years Eve in 1957. Three months later, his body was found in the Connecticut River, his legs and arms bound with rope.

Alex Diotto/Jeremy Holt

Vermont writer Jeremy Holt of Middlebury has written a graphic novel in four issues called Southern Dog, which tackles teen angst, the after-effects of a wolf bite and racism in the Deep South.

Holt recently spoke to VPR about where the story elements for Southern Dog emerged, and what fueled the writing process.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

For New Hampshire sixth grader Ruby Pepperdine, the "center of everything" is up on the rooftop of Pepperdine Motors, stargazing with her grandmother, Gigi. In Vermont author Linda Urban's book The Center of Everything, after Gigi dies, Ruby has one big regret. She didn't listen to the last thing her grandmother tried to tell her.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Vermont College of Fine Arts, in Montpelier, was in celebration mode last week as the American Library Association announced its annual awards for young adult and children's literature. Three alumnae, one of whom is now on the faculty, and a former faculty member of the school's Masters of Fine Arts program in Writing for Children and Young Adults earned ALA honors.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

P.S. Be Eleven takes place in a very different time and place from modern-day Moretown, Vermont. The book's three sisters live in Brooklyn, New York in the late-1960s with their Pa and grandmother, who they call Big Ma. But, their mother lives in Oakland, California where she's involved with the radical civil rights group the Black Panthers.

ForeEdge, an imprint of University Press of New England

In the late 19th century, the Arctic Basin was a mystery to many, destroying ships and explorers with its fierce ice. The Fram was a revolutionary ship designed to solve this problem, built to latch on to, and float with, the Arctic ice.

Northshire Bookstore

In the Rutland area, the name Lenny Burke is well known to many. But thanks to a new book by Yvonne Daley, called A Bend in the Road, Lenny Burke's remarkable story of overcoming a traumatic brain injury is being rediscovered by a whole new generation. And many are only just now realizing the tremendous impact Burke and his mother Emmie have had on T.B.I. treatment in Vermont and beyond.

Simon & Schuster

Women are a larger part of the labor force than ever before in the U.S., but society is still not always kind to women who step out of the boundaries of what's considered acceptable. That's one reason Vermont author Megan Mayhew Bergman wrote her new book of short stories, Almost Famous Women.

Angela Evancie / VPR

The author of numerous works of fiction and essays, Salman Rushdie won the Booker Prize in 1981 for his novel Midnight's Children, and later that decade, became something of a story himself when his novel The Satanic Verses drew outrage from some Muslims around the world, and a call for his assassination issued in a Fatwa by Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini.

So it is also accurate to say that Rushdie knows a thing or two about the power of stories.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

This month Dorothy's List visited the West Rutland School, where sixth graders have been reading a Golden Boy by Tara Sullivan. Golden Boy tells the story of an albino Tanzanian boy named Habo. Habo is forced to flee across his country, when a poacher tries to hunt him down. It's a difficult read that’s hard to categorize. It reads like historical fiction, but the real-life circumstances are both modern-day and horrifying.

Herb Swanson / swanpix.com

Vermont may be a small state, but it’s big with readers. In fact, it ranks third in the nation when it comes to the number of bookstores per capita. That’s keeping independent booksellers happy this shopping season.

Nati Harnik / AP

Most children's books are fun little bits of fiction conjured up to make children laugh. It's not often you'll find non-fiction children's books that also manage to delight young readers with their true tale.

Wind Ridge Books

The publishing world has changed dramatically since the introduction of the Gutenberg press. Companies like Amazon have shaken up the relationship between the reader and publisher, causing some in the publishing world to think it’s becoming a commodities market.


Green Writers Press / YouTube

A new collection of fiction offers a diverse perspective of the people and places that make Vermont what it is.

The anthology includes stories by well-known, award-winning authors such as Julia Alvarez, Wallace Stegner, Annie Proulx and Howard Frank Mosher, but it also mixes in stories from writers you may have never read, waiting to be discovered and enjoyed.

Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

Courage Has No Color, by Vermont author Tanya Lee Stone, is the true story of the 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion, which was created during World War II. The battalion was known as the Triple Nickels. The men who made up the Triple Nickels were the first African Americans to serve in the United States military as paratroopers.

Namelos Editions

Will Poole's Island, a new novel by Vermont writer Tim Weed, is a perfect fit for the Thanksgiving season. It's historical fiction set in the colonial era, and it tells the story of an English boy who becomes immersed in a native community.

Chooseco Publishing

Many readers fondly remember the childhood joy and suspense brought by the Choose Your Own Adventure books. This series allowed young readers to make choices throughout the book that changed the story slightly, finishing with one of up to 14 different endings.

Ramon Espinosa / AP File

This weekend in Burlington the Peace & Justice Center is holding an event to honor the Migrant Justice, a group that works with Vermont’s community of migrant farm workers, trying to get them access to transportation, health care, and safe working conditions.

Author and Vermonter Julia Alvarez will be at the Peace & Justice Center event reading from her newest short story.

Pages