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Mosquito Conversations Cover Image

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More Stories from the Upper Peninsula by

Goodreads rating: 5.00

Paperback, Published in Jun 2009 by North Star Press of St. Cloud

ISBN10: 0878393366 | ISBN13: 9780878393367

Page count: 139

Mosquito Conversations: More Stories from the Upper Peninsula, arguably Lauri Anderson's best work to date, is a loosely connected group of stories based on the lives and loves of his quaint and quirky characters. Aptly named, the text operates within Anderson's larger venture, the examination of character in extreme isolation, bolstered by rural knowledge and an environment of exquisite beauty but of harsh climate. "As his character Reino says about the author's earlier work titledMisery Bay, 'My book has virtually nothing to do with the real people who live in Misery Bay. . . . I just like the name of the place, its extreme isolation, and its profound beauty.' Reino, the embodiment of Anderson in the text, continues, 'In the first Misery Bay book, I wanted to examine the effects of geographic isolation on character. . . In the second Misery Bay book, I wanted to see what happens when characters carry an isolated piece of geography inside them after they move to Los Angeles or Chicago or Tampa.' "In this book, rural characters from Maine and Upper Michigan haphazardly meet and are overheard at a fictionalized Mosquito Inn. They have sojourned into the larger world with some journeys occurring in fact and some only in characters' imaginations as a result of the texts they read, but on their return we overhear their conversations. "Set amidst the political turmoil of our time, the characters try to make sense of information they gain in their travels, including evidence of American anti-intellectualism, the effects of crazed ideologies standing in for political principle, the nonsense of incipient bureaucracy, the idiosyncrasy of education that reinforces ignorance, the failure of families, and relationships in a family-values society that fails to nurture either. "In spite of the bleak conclusions available for the reader to draw, Anderson offers his best assessment of the Bush-era American life. The book is not to be missed." Beth L. Virtanen, Ph.D., Professor & Paloheimo Scholar, Finlandia University

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