Other Fiction books

March 11, 2016 Posted by: Jessi Gerdes, Librarian

Other Fictional books set in Yellowstone

 Again, I can't talk about every fiction book set in the park, but here are a few other notables.

Every time a patron comes into the library and says, "My mother used to read me a book...," we know they're talking about Cubby in Wonderland by Joyce Farnsworth. In this much loved book, Mommie Bear and Cubby, her son, plan a journey from their cave under the Grand Teton peak to Wonderland Yellowstone Park. Cubby was delighted by the idea of such a long and wonderful journey and his surprise increased when they reached the Park. What happened there to Cubby and his mother is told in a manner that will charm and instruct the girls and boys who are introduced to Cubby and follow his adventures.

 

Grace Harlowe’s Overland Riders in the Yellowstone National Park by Jessie Graham Flower (1923) is actually one book from a set of four series of books about Grace Harlowe and her friends; high schools, College Girls, Overseas (done during the first World War to teach young girls about what was going on overseas), and Overland Riders. In the last series, after coming back from Europe, Grace and her friends travel around the USA on horseback. In Yellowstone, they have a series of misadventures including losing their horses, having their guide die, killing a geyser, falling through the crust around a geyser, and meeting Jim Bridger (their guide, Jim Badger). This is like a handbook for how NOT to behave in Yellowstone.

The Ecoseekers Collection now numbers three but it started with The Land of Curiosities by Deanna Neil (2007). In this book, James and Alice Clifton don't know if they'll survive out West. Alice can't stop coughing and James longs for his father's guidance. Together with their mother and Reverend Lawson, they go looking for answers in Yellowstone-the year it's turned into the world's first national park! They encounter bison, see hot springs, meet prospectors, and learn about protecting the park's natural wonders. But their adventure becomes clouded by the sinister plot of Billy 'Bloody' Knuckles. Will James and Alice uncover his plan, before it's too late?

This book won the Nautilus Book Award for Fiction – Teen (2010) -- The Nautilus Awards recognizes Books and Audio Books that promote spiritual growth, conscious living & positive social change. Also notable? Ms. Neil came to the library to do research on what travel in this time period would have been like.

During the '80s and '90s, there was a series of books where readers could choose where the stories were going. The President’s Stuck in the Mud and other Wild West Escapades by Stephen A. Bly (1985) is one such example. This particular choose-your-own-adventure might end in you encountering a bear or meeting Teddy Roosevelt.

“Tabor Evans,” author of Long Arm on the Yellowstone (1980), is sort of like “Carolyn Keene,” there is no such person but a series of writers. This was the 18th book in the series there are now over 400. It is part of the “Adult Western” genre (include more violence and sex than regular westerns). In this book, U.S. Deputy Marshal Curtis Long is sent to the park to determine whether it is too wild and should be opened to “exploitation” in order to “civilize it.” He eventually decides against it.

Letters from Yellowstone (1999) was a highly and well-researched book. Dr. Diane Smith worked to make sure that her late nineteenth century heroine, a botanist, has accurate descriptions of not only travel in the book, but accurate descriptions of the plants as well. A. E. Bartram has been accidentally summoned west when Howard Merriam, a mild-mannered professor, assumes that she is a man and adds her to their expedition. Told in letters alternating between Alex and Howar,

 Perhaps the most bemusing book in this collection is Two Days with Hitler in Yellowstone Jesse Hance (1972). A young man is hitchhiking from Baltimore to Seattle in 1930 when he is picked up by a German driver, Walter Schwuker, who claimed he was working for the United States Navy Department doing research work on airplanes. 

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Last updated: March 18, 2016

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