Off The Beaten Path Bookstore aims to create a space where authors and local artisans can thrive. Our local interest section features Steamboat histories by Harriet Freiberger, Chris Diamond, Sureva Towler, and Dagny McKinley; Steamboat memoirs by Mary Kurtz, John Sant’Ambrogio, and Eugene Bachaman; and loads of fiction by locals such as Gabriella Chester. Our staff is dedicated to cultivating a love of reading in this wonderful community. All books are available for order via steamboatbooks.com.
Reading the West
Off The Beaten Path is celebrating Reading the West! These awards feature a collection of western authors that celebrate the diversity of western authors and stories. Come by to check out the nominees and winners!
Deep Creek: Finding Hope in the High Country – Pam Houston
Description: On her 120-acre homestead high in the Colorado Rockies, beloved writer Pam Houston learns what it means to care for a piece of land and the creatures on it. Elk calves and bluebirds mark the changing seasons, winter temperatures drop to 35 below, and lightning sparks a 110,000-acre wildfire, threatening her century-old barn and all its inhabitants. Through her travels from the Gulf of Mexico to Alaska, she explores what ties her to the earth, the ranch most of all. Alongside her devoted Irish wolfhounds and a spirited troupe of horses, donkeys, and Icelandic sheep, the ranch becomes Houston’s sanctuary, a place where she discovers how the natural world has mothered and healed her after a childhood of horrific parental abuse and neglect. In essays as lucid and invigorating as mountain air, Deep Creek delivers Houston’s most profound meditations yet on how “to live simultaneously inside the wonder and the grief… to love the damaged world and do what I can to help it thrive.”
Sabrina & Corina – Kali Fajardo-Anstine https://drive.google.com/file/d/1y46DYExPK6MVUs58rTvlJyh6_EkuoEQq/view?usp=sharing
Description: Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s magnetic story collection breathes life into her Latina characters of indigenous ancestry and the land they inhabit in the American West. Against the remarkable backdrop of Denver, Colorado–a place that is as fierce as it is exquisite–these women navigate the land the way they navigate their lives: with caution, grace, and quiet force.
In “Sugar Babies,” ancestry and heritage are hidden inside the earth but tend to rise during land disputes. “Any Further West” follows a sex worker and her daughter as they leave their ancestral home in southern Colorado only to find a foreign and hostile land in California. In “Tomi,” a woman leaves prison and finds herself in a gentrified city that is a shadow of the one she remembers from her childhood. And in the title story, “Sabrina & Corina,” a Denver family falls into a cycle of violence against women, coming together only through ritual.
Sabrina & Corina is a moving narrative of unrelenting feminine power and an exploration of the universal experiences of abandonment, heritage, and an eternal sense of home.
Narrative Nonfiction Award
Lakota America – Pekka Hämäläinen
Description: The first comprehensive history of the Lakota Indians and their profound role in shaping America’s history. This first complete account of the Lakota Indians traces their rich and often surprising history from the early sixteenth to the early twenty-first century. Pekka Hamalainen explores the Lakotas’ roots as marginal hunter-gatherers and reveals how they reinvented themselves twice: first as a river people who dominated the Missouri Valley, America’s great commercial artery, and then-in what was America’s first sweeping westward expansion-as a horse people who ruled supreme on the vast high plains. The Lakotas are imprinted in American historical memory. Red Cloud, Crazy Horse, and Sitting Bull are iconic figures in the American imagination, but in this groundbreaking book they emerge as something different: the architects of Lakota America, an expansive and enduring Indigenous regime that commanded human fates in the North American interior for generations. Hamalainen’s deeply researched and engagingly written history places the Lakotas at the center of American history, and the results are revelatory.
Visual Nonfiction Award
Atlas of the National Parks -Jon Waterman
Description: Profiles of 60 parks–from battlefields to national seashores–administered by the
National Park Service, highlighting their diverse appeal and available outdoor activities. A brief glimpse is given of 29 additional parks, including the newly created Indiana Sand Dunes.
Young Adult Fiction Award
The Field Guide to the North American Teenager – Ben Philippe
Description: A hilarious YA contemporary realistic novel about a witty Black French Canadian teen who moves to Austin, Texas, and experiences the joys, clichés, and awkward humiliations of the American high school experience–including falling in love. Perfect for fans of Nicola Yoon, When Dimple Met Rishi, and John Green. This young adult novel is an excellent choice for accelerated tween readers in grades 7 to 8, especially during homeschooling. It’s a fun way to keep your child entertained and engaged while not in the classroom.
Young Readers Award
Dear Sweet Pea – Julie Murphy https://drive.google.com/file/d/1B08lSyN9BnY-Cspg2SQiPzFou38JjcsG/view?usp=sharing
Description: Patricia “Sweet Pea” DiMarco wasn’t sure what to expect when her parents announced they were getting a divorce. She never could have imagined that they would have the “brilliant” idea of living in nearly identical houses on the same street. In the one house between them lives their eccentric neighbor Miss Flora Mae, the famed local advice columnist behind “Miss Flora Mae I?”
Dividing her time between two homes is not easy. And it doesn’t help that at school, Sweet Pea is now sitting right next to her ex-best friend, Kiera, a daily reminder of the friendship that once was. Things might be unbearable if Sweet Pea didn’t have Oscar–her new best friend–and her fifteen-pound cat, Cheese.
Then one day Flora leaves for a trip and asks Sweet Pea to forward her the letters for the column. And Sweet Pea happens to recognize the handwriting on one of the envelopes.
What she decides to do with that letter sets off a chain of events that will forever change the lives of Sweet Pea DiMarco, her family, and many of the readers of “Miss Flora Mae I?”
Picture Book Award
The Littlest Snow Plow Wishes for Snow – Lora Koehler, illustrated by Jake Parker
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jo5VsetPSFti5tfeQoO2_lGFrxz2cmSs/view?usp=sharing Description: The plucky little hero of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Little Snowplow returns in a story about wishing, waiting, and the magic of a first snowfall.
The little snowplow loves his job on the Mighty Mountain Road Crew, but the work he loves best is plowing snow. Throughout the year, he wishes for snow to come, but winter begins without a single flake in sight. As the weeks pass and the little snowplow’s birthday approaches, he starts to wonder whether it will snow at all. Will the little snowplow’s birthday dreams come true?
Eating the West Award
The Prairie Homestead Cookbook- Jill Winger https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uFj_ydAatMmylMIowduAL1eYiINY6dfY/view?usp=sharing
Description: Jill Winger, creator of the award-winning blog The Prairie Homestead, introduces her debut The Prairie Homestead Cookbook, including 100+ delicious, wholesome recipes made with fresh ingredients to bring the flavors and spirit of homestead cooking to any kitchen table.