Dispatches from a State of Mind
“While his four decades of residence [in the Midwest] are manifested in his writing through veracity of voice, tone, and fact, it is [Steve Hannah’s] status as perpetual ‘newcomer’ . . . that infuses these tales with a palpable sense of discovery, marvel, and wonder.”
Years ago, Steve Hannah’s chance detour through the Midwest cut short a planned cross-country trip. He found himself in Wisconsin, a distinctly different place from the east coast where he was born and raised. Charmingly beautiful and full of welcoming people, America’s dairyland would soon become his home.
Dairylandia recounts Steve Hannah’s burgeoning love for his adopted state through the writings of his long-lived column, “State of Mind.” He profiles the lives of the seemingly ordinary, yet quite (and quietly) extraordinary folks he met and befriended on his travels. From Norwegian farmers to rattlesnake hunters to a woman who kept her favorite dead bird in the freezer, Hannah was charmed and fascinated by practically everyone he met. These captivating vignettes are by turns humorous, tragic, and remarkable—and remind us of our shared humanity.
“Hannah transcends the role of a journalist and becomes our friendly guide, taking us where the trail leads him. . . . With a reporter’s instinct, and a touch of carnival showmanship, he entertains and makes readers want to see who’s next.”
—Wisconsin People & Ideas
“One doesn’t have to be from Wisconsin to enjoy this book. . . . As he reminds us, we don’t have to look far to find interesting and decent people.”
—Burrowing into Books
“Hannah has woven together an honest and humorous self-portrait and a fascinating collection of stories about an array of Wisconsinites. It’s clear that a deep love for Wisconsin’s people and its landscapes runs through these stories.”
—Lynne Diebel, author of Crossing the Driftless
“A marvelous book by a longtime Wisconsin journalist who writes with insight, humor, and compassion about the state and its residents.”
Of Related Interest
LC: 2019017146 PN
264 pp. 6 x 9
24 b/w illus.