Flyover Lives

Flyover Lives

A Memoir

Book - 2014
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"From the New York Times bestselling author of Le Divorce, a dazzling meditation on the mysteries of the "wispy but material" family ghosts who shape us. Growing up in the small river town of Moline, Illinois, Diane Johnson always dreamed of floating down the Mississippi and off to see the world. Years later, at home in France, a French friend teases her: 'Indifference to history--that's why you Americans seem so naive and don't really know where you're from.' The j'accuse stayed with Johnson. Were Americans indifferent to history? Her own family seemed always to have been in the Midwest. Surely they had got there from somewhere? In digging around, she discovers letters and memoirs written by generations of stalwart pioneer ancestors that testify to more complex times than the derisive nickname 'The Flyover' gives the region credit for. With the acuity and sympathy that her novels are known for, she captures the magnetic pull of home against our lust for escape and self-invention. This spellbinding memoir will appeal to fans of Bill Bryson, Patricia Hampl, and Annie Dillard"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, New York :, Viking,, 2014
ISBN: 9780670016402
0670016403
Branch Call Number: B Johnson 2014
Characteristics: xviii, 263 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm

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TheresaAJ
Dec 17, 2018

Diane Johnson, a prolific novelist and essayist, traces her ancestry via family stories and carefully saved letters and diaries. Although she was raised in Moline, Illinois, she's spent much of her adult life in California, England, and France. Starting with Rene Cosset who left France in 1711, she tells of the family's wanderings through New England and Canada before finally landing on the fertile soil of western Illinois. Illustrated with family photographs, Johnson shares a family history that could probably be the same saga for many families in "flyover country".

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