Late Harvest Green is an American story, a tale of open spaces, of men and women as rooted in the land, and as nourished by it, as the crops they grow. But war reaches them, and changes come, even in in their peaceful valley.
Local Author named a finalist in Next Generation Indie Book Awards
Late Harvest Green, an Idaho Farm Family Through the 20th Century by Lois Requist, published by Benicia Literary Arts, has been named a finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards in two categories—Ebook fiction and General fiction/novels (under 80,000 words).
These awards are the largest international awards for independent publishers, established to recognize and honor the most exceptional independently published books in over 70 different categories. These awards include an invitation to attend the Gala Awards Reception in Washington D.C., gold award stickers to put on the book, listing in various catalogs, and possible consideration by various literary agents.
Late Harvest Green was published in 2018 by Benicia Literary Arts. It was edited by Mary Eichbauer and others. The cover is from a painting by Susan Street and was adapted for cover art by Tom Stanton.
Benicia Literary Arts strives to publish work of high literary merit. Since its inception in 2012, it has published The Long Blue Room, a book of poetry by Joan Gelfand, With a Dream so Proud, The Life of Stephen Vincent Benet, by Donnell Rubay, and the last four anthologies of the First Tuesday Poetry Group, led by the poet laureate. The current poet laureate is Tom Stanton.
“I’m thrilled that the book has received this recognition and appreciative of Indie Books for honoring publications by independent authors and publishers. It’s hard to get attention in a world dominated by large publishers,” Requist said. She is a native of Idaho. Though she has lived most of her adult life in California, the story in this book is largely from childhood memories and impressions of her home in Nampa, Idaho.
Requist has published two other books, Where Lilacs Bloom and RVing Solo Across America without a cat, dog, man, or gun. She’s also published poetry, short stories, and nonfiction articles. She writes the column “The Village Voice” for Carquinez Village, a duty she shares with Judie Donaldson.
Late Harvest Green and other publications by Benicia Literary Arts are available at Bookshop Benicia and also online at amazon and other stores.
Late Harvest Green is a quiet, heartfelt evocation of life in a small town in Idaho over several generations of a farm family. Denver Johnson, the point-of-view character, is a simple man. He doesn’t lead or create, he doesn’t take charge of his destiny but watches life swirl around him while he thinks and feels deeply about his time and his history.
The emotional focus widens as the work progresses, eventually showing the effects of the family’s past on its present. There is a deep love of history here, a love of life, and profound compassion for the human condition.
The manuscript is divided into three sections by time: 1950s, 70s, and 90s. But the past always informs the present: what people remember, what they forget and forgive, how experience forms them. This family knows great happiness, and yet great tragedy befalls it, too. At the center of the book is the mystery of connection—how people form attachments, and how fragile these become in the face of loss or trauma, how some people thrive despite great loss, and others crumble under it.
The author remains faithful to the main characters’ dated opinions on war, love, the status of women, etc. She treats her characters kindly as she delves into the mysteries of memory, forgiveness, and family, while presenting the reality of loss and heartache with no sugar coating. The main characters are deeply and finely wrought. I felt as if I knew them as real people.
Like Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, Late Harvest Green recreates a unique time and place. The unchanging mountains, the taste of a ripe peach, the scent and heft of the soil—all act as talismans to draw you deep into a vanished world whose riches are fleeting, and very real.
Lois Requist, Author
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