Marilyn June Coffey, a Nebraska native, lived for 30 years in New York City. While there, her controversial novel Marcella broke a world record for frankness and her wry poem “Pricksong” won a national prize.
Now an internationally published author, Coffey lives in Omaha with a feisty orange cat and an undisciplined garden. She writes history books. Atlantic featured her Great Plains Patchwork on its cover and again on-line. Amazon and Kindle named Coffey’s Mail-Order Kid best sellers. Amazon called her Thieves, Rascals & Sore Losers a best history book. Coffey’s latest—That Punk Jimmy Hoffa!—details her trucker father’s clash with the Teamsters.
Great Plains Patchwork
Great Plains Patchwork lyrically chronicles the “wondrous strange” Great Plains, a grassland with no equal on earth. Join author, poet and prose stylist Marilyn Coffey as she follows her family’s traces from the 1880s, when her great-grandfathers broke sod, to 1959. Linger with her as she skillfully stitches together historical research, myth, family legend, and memory to recreate a now-lost world. An ancient world, sixty-five million years old. A gorgeous world of glittering flowers and native grasses tangled in a wild profusion webbed by buffalo and Indian paths. A funny world filled with raucous, Irish-American humor. A terror-fraught world of drought, dust storms, and grasshopper hordes. Of dizzying tornadoes, violent thunderstorms, and lethal lightning bolts. Of rowdy roughhousing, record-busting bank robbers, World War II heroes, Teamsters’ Union battles, and mass murderers.
Not only is Great Plains Patchwork unique for its author’s voice and its patchwork construction, but also for its location–the often-overlooked yet pivotal central plains–and its subject. What happened to the descendants of the second wave of immigration is rarely written about and even more rarely by a woman. Until now.
Great Plains Patchwork
"An entertaining, insightful collection.”
The New York Times
“I hope your book goes like a house afire. It looks as if it should.”
Wallace Stegner, an American novelist, short story writer and historian, often called “The Dean of Western Writers.”
“A rich & fertile book.”
Meridel LeSueur, an American author who grew up on the Midwestern plains and was known for writing about the Depression Era.