MTPR

Arts & Culture

Author interviews, food, natural history, poetry, and more from "The Write Question", "The Food Guys", "Field Notes", "Home Ground Radio", "Front Row Center", and "Reflections West".

Go West Young Woman!

Sep 19, 2017
Nancy Quinn

Have you ever found a cougar on your swing set or a moose in your driveway? Go West, Young Woman! is the true story of one family’s transition from beltway living in metro Washington, D.C. to what they thought would be a “calmer” existence in rural Montana. They soon discover how unprepared they are for the challenges ahead, both comical and adventurous. The humor of their early encounters with cattle and local customs only masks the more ominous confrontations with predators and nature.

Montana Book Festival
Montana Book Festival

Karla Theilen the director of the Montana Book Festival preview's the upcoming festival in Missoula. Theilen says the festival has, "kept true to some of the traditions ... in celebrating Montana's celebrated literary figures, and ... moved to another level and introduced a little bit more diverse programming, not just in the types of authors, but also in the types of events we're putting on."

Listen in to learn more about the festival's 2017 offerings from Karla Theilen and "The Write Question" host Sarah Aronson.

Lentil Underground

Sep 14, 2017

Lentil Underground has been selected as the University of Montana 2017 Griz Read. For more information about the program and Liz Carlisle's lecture on September 21, 2017, please visit the University of Montana website here.

Forty years ago, corporate agribusiness launched a campaign to push small grain farmers to modernize or perish, or as Nixon Administration Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz put it, to “get big or get out. But twenty-seven year-old David Oien decided to take a stand. When he dropped out of grad school to return to his family’s 280 acre farm, Oien became the first in his conservative Montana county to seed his fields with a radically different crop: organic lentils.  

The Solace Of Trees

Sep 12, 2017
New Europe Books

"Madrygin’s harrowing, compelling debut will live long in the reader’s memory. . . A timely novel that introduces a writer of huge ambition, The Solace of Trees is deeply informative and moving, and it will spark debates regarding American foreign policy." — Booklist

The Solace of Trees tells the story of Amir, a young boy of secular Muslim heritage who witnesses his family’s murder in the Bosnian War. Amir hides in a forest, mute and shocked, among refugees fleeing for their lives. Narrowly escaping death, he finds sanctuary, and after a charity relocates him to the United States, the retired professor who fosters Amir learns that the boy holds a shameful secret concerning his parents’ and sister’s deaths. Amir’s years in the US bring him healing. As Amir enters adulthood, his destiny brings him full circle back to the darkness he thought he’d forever escaped.

Described from the perspective of a child victim, The Solace of Trees is the lesser-told story of the tragedy of war, from the Bosnian War to the US policy of government-sponsored abductions. A tale shared by countless victims in countless times and places, it is both a sobering look at the hidden cost of war and an affirmation of the human spirit.

Burnt snags in western Montana
Josh Burnham (CC-BY-NC-2)

One of my favorite places to look in the forest is up. I love the way trees frame patches of sky, and how rays of sun slide over the branches and slant into pockets of darkness. On a recent stroll through the woods near Echo lake, I found myself, as usual, looking up. I saw mostly fir and birch trees, and I took their narrow trunks and modest heights as signs of a young forest. But it was a much older tree that caught my eye.

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