The 2022 choice for One Ebook One Nebraska, “Bones of Paradise,” is a sweeping household saga by author and College of Nebraska–Lincoln scholar Jonis Agee.
“Bones of Paradise” was printed in 2016, and beforehand gained accolades together with the Nebraska Ebook Award and the Excessive Plains Ebook Award for fiction. The novel tells a familial story spanning a number of generations within the Nebraska Sandhills. Informed in opposition to the backdrop of the bloodbath at Wounded Knee, the saga explores themes of vengeance, racism, loyalty, household ties and generational trauma.
Agee is the Adele Corridor Professor of English and teaches artistic writing programs for the college’s preeminent Inventive Writing Program. She was thrilled to be taught her novel had been chosen for this system, which options Nebraska authors and themes and encourages all Nebraskans to learn and discover a e-book collectively.
“It was a type of nice moments,” Agee stated. “I used to be floored, I couldn’t imagine it. It hadn’t entered my discipline that they have been doing this, and I by no means thought it was doable.”
Inspirations for the story have been discovered throughout a lot of Agee’s travels to the Sandhills, one among her favourite locations within the world.
“I’ve all the time been fascinated, even once I was youthful, by the best way folks have hung onto these giant items of land, and within the Sandhills, you possibly can’t disrupt the land, so it takes lots to have a ranch operation,” she stated. “I’ve been concerned with how that every one got here to be, and I heard a narrative a number of years in the past a few ranching household, who had a practice of — with a view to dangle on to what they owned — the household would give their eldest son to the grandfather.
“The grandfather would elevate that child in a extremely powerful method, with no consolation or nurturing. That basically haunted me. After which I had visited Wounded Knee, and I used to be actually moved by that. A narrative started to evolve the place you are taking all these characters which can be uncovered to those horrors, and what comes after that?”
Agee is hoping the pandemic will abate sufficient that she will meet with readers in particular person. She’s been including dates to her calendar because the announcement and dealing with the Nebraska Library Fee and Humanities Nebraska on further occasions. She’s able to get again on Nebraska’s highways and byways.
“I like to drive,” Agee stated. “It’s like a dream to have this chance. I’ll get to drive to new locations and meet new folks. I prefer to cease alongside the best way and see the little roadside locations, the locations that make a city proud. I’m form of the last word vacationer in that method, and generally these locations get right into a e-book.”
She additionally hopes that studying the e-book, with its inclusion of Wounded Knee, will spur discussions within the teams on the atrocities dedicated in opposition to Native Individuals by the US authorities and settlers.
“It’s a chunk of our historical past that’s uncomfortable,” Agee stated. “When the e-book got here out in 2016, and I went to some e-book golf equipment and readings, I might speak about it and current supplies, and I plan to try this once more. I believe it does begin these conversations.”
One Ebook One Nebraska is sponsored by the Nebraska Heart for the Ebook, Humanities Nebraska and the Nebraska Library Fee. The organizations will produce support materials, including discussion guides, which will be available Jan. 1. Moreover, occasions and actions deliberate can be shared by the One Ebook One Nebraska Facebook page.