MTPR

Carrie La Seur's Novel Is Full Of Secrets That Will Not Lie Still

Jul 22, 2015

The Home Place, by Carrie La Seur, is a mystery novel in which a successful lawyer is pulled back into her troubled family’s life in rural Montana in the wake of her sister’s death.

About the book:

The only Terrebonne who made it out, Alma thought she was done with Montana, with its bleak winters and stifling ways. But an unexpected call from the local police takes the successful lawyer back to her provincial hometown and pulls her into the family trouble she thought she’d left far behind: Her lying, party-loving sister, Vicky, is dead. Alma is told that a very drunk Vicky had wandered away from a party and died of exposure after a night in the brutal cold. But when Alma returns home to bury Vicky and see to her orphaned niece, she discovers that the death may not have been an accident.

The Home Place is a story of secrets that will not lie still, human bonds that will not break, and crippling memories that will not be silenced. It is a story of rural towns and runaways, of tensions corporate and racial, of childhood trauma and adolescent betrayal, and of the guilt that even forgiveness cannot ease. Most of all, this is a story of the place we carry in us always: home.

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Carrie La Seur is a seventh generation descendant of homesteaders who came to Montana in 1864 and settled in what is now called the Gallatin Valley, near the headwaters of the Missouri River. After graduating from Bryn Mawr College, Carrie was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship and earned a doctorate in modern languages from Oxford University. In 2006, she founded the legal nonprofit Plains Justice, which provides public interest energy and environmental legal services in the northern plains states. Carrie and Plains Justice have played a key role in halting several new coal plants, enacting clean energy reforms, and launching the Keystone XL pipeline campaign.

Carrie currently practices law on behalf of farmers, ranchers, and Native Americans, and does a little writing, from an office in Billings, Montana. A licensed private pilot, she hikes, skis, and fishes the Montana wilderness with her family in her spare time. Her work has appeared in such diverse media as Grist, Harvard Law and Policy Review, The Huffington Post, Mother Jones, and Salon.

A review of The Home Place by Beth Fish.