The 24th annual Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards (NEMBA), featuring best-selling suspense novelist, Brian Freeman, will be held on Thurs., May 17 in the Kirby Ballroom. This event is free and open to the public. Reservations are not required.
Festivities open at 5 pm with a book fair and refreshments. At 6:30 pm, Brian Freeman will give the keynote address followed by the award presentations, hosted by Barton Sutter, Duluth's first poet laureate. Following the awards, the book fair continues from 8-9 pm.
Awards are given in six categories: (1) fiction, (2) poetry, (3) memoir/creative nonfiction, (4) general nonfiction, (5) children's literature and (6) art/photography will be presented. The winner of each category receives a cash prize of $200, and the winning author and the honorable mention in each category receives a glass plaque. NEMBA is a free community event sponsored by the UMD Library with financial support from Friends of the Duluth Public Library and Lake Superior Writers. For more information, visit the UMD Library/NEMBA website.
This year's speaker, Brian Freeman, is an international best-selling author of psychological suspense novels. His books—often set in Duluth and featuring Duluth police lieutenant Jonathan Stride—have been sold in 46 countries and published in 20 languages.
“I’m delighted to be part of an event that celebrates books and writers in the Northland,” says Freeman, who has lived in Minnesota for over twenty years. “We have such a rich community of storytellers in northern Minnesota, and this is our chance to put their contributions to our culture front and center. Their stories help us better understand the place we live, whether it’s through history, landscape, images, or people.”
His debut thriller, Immoral, won the Macavity Award and was chosen as International Book of the Month by book clubs around the world. Publishers Weekly gave his fourth book, In the Dark, a starred review, calling it Freeman’s best book yet, “harrowing and heartrending.” His fifth novel, The Burying Place, was a finalist for Best Novel of 2010 in the International Thriller Writer Awards. His seventh book, Spilled Blood, is due out in May.
Freeman is also known as an engaging speaker. Prior to embarking on his career as an author, he established a reputation as a communication strategist helping organizations build relationships with clients, customers, donors, employees, and other important constituencies through the use of innovative "storytelling" tools.
Each year, NEMBA recognizes books that best represent northeastern Minnesota in the areas of history, culture, heritage, or lifestyle. Forty-seven books, published in 2011, have been nominated.
BlizzardBall, Dennis Kelly, North Star Press of St. Cloud
Dead Ahead: A Jo Spence Mystery, Jen Wright, Clover Valley Press
A Long-Forgotten Truth, Rachel Ballard, Rozlyn Press
Telegram: A Wartime Novel about Peace, L. Douglas Hoffmann, A-Argus Better Book Publishers
Where Echoes Die, Pam Leonard, North Star Press of St. Cloud
Where Memories Dream: Campfire Stories for the Boundary Waters, Steven Coz, Savage Press
The Winds of Change: A Family's Journey to a Future of Promise, Duane Schwartz, A-Argus Better Book Publisher
Birdland, Kathy McTavish, Wildwood River Press
Cloud Birds, Sheila Packa, Wildwood River Press
East of Nowhere, Larry Christianson, North Star Press of St. Cloud
Fog & Woodsmoke: Behind the Image, Stephani Schaefer, Lost Hills Books
Marrow, Muscle, Flight, Gary Boelhower, Wildwood River Press
Migrations: Poetry and Prose for Life's Transitions, Sheila Packa, ed., Wildwood River Press
Tumbled Dry, Charmaine Donovan, Lost Hills Books
Agates of Lake Superior: Stunning Varieties and How They Are Formed, Dan R. Lynch and Bob Lynch, Adventure Publications
Ancient Earth and the First Ancestors: A Cultural and Geological Journey, Ron Morton and Carl Gawboy, illustrations by Carl Gawboy, Rockflower Press
And the Snow Came Up to Here: Schools of Carlton County, Minnesota, Nancy C. Hanson, published by author with the assistance of Dovetailed Press
Anishinaabe Syndicated: A View from the Rez, Jim Northrup, Minnesota Historical Society Press
A Boundary Waters History: Canoeing Across Time, Stephen Wilbers, The History Press
Campfires and Loon Calls: Travels in the Boundary Waters, Jerry Apps, photography by Steve Apps, Fulcrum Publishing
Cooking in Canoe Country, Robert Black with Susan Peterson, Carmen Black, and Maja Black, Nodin Press Dorothy Molter: The Root Beer Lady, Sarah Guy-Levar and Terri Schocke, Adventure Publications Ezhichigeyang: Ojibwe Word List, Nancy Jones, Gordon Jourdain, and Rose Tainter, edited by Anton Treuer and Keller Paap, Waadookodaading Ojibwe Immersion Charter School
Faces and Places II...A Second Look: A Cook County Historical Album 1930-1960, Pat Zankman, 2nd edition editor; co-edited by M.J. Humphrey, Adolph A. Toftey, and Willis H. Raff, Cook County Historical Society Hiking the North Shore: 50 Fabulous Day Hikes in Minnesota's Spectacular Lake Superior Region, Andrew Slade, There and Back Books
Minnesota Rocks & Minerals: A Field Guide to the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Dan R. Lynch and Bob Lynch, Adventure Publications
The Oranges Are Sweet: Major Don M. Beerbower and the 353rd Fighter Squadron, November 1942 to August 1944, Paul M. Sailer, Loden Books
Staycation in Minnesota: Up North, Patricia Overson, North Star Press of St. Cloud
Trout Caviar: Recipes from a Northern Forager, Brett Laidlaw, Minnesota Historical Society Press
Twelve Owls, Laura Erickson, with illustrations by Betsy Bowen, University of Minnesota Press
20 Great BWCA Trips: Exploring the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, Van Jordahl and Gerald Strom, Adventure Publications
Memoir and Creative Nonfiction
Hauling Water: Reflections on Making a Home in the North Woods, Becca Brin Manlove, illustrated by Sharon Brin Hathaway, Raven Productions
Shelter, Sarah Stonich, Borealis Books, Minnesota Historical Society Press
Spirit of the Lights, Chuck Frederick, Lake Superior Port Cities
A View of the Lake: Living the Dream on Lake Superior, Beryl Singleton Bissell, Lake Superior Port Cities Whitey: From Farm Kid to Flying Tiger to Attorney, Wayne G. Johnson, Langdon Street Press
Around a Woodsy Corner, Marcy Bolinger, illustrated by Rhonda Weitzel, Gunflint Trail Productions
Birds in Our Backyard: Say Hello to Minnesota's Feathered Friends, text by Adele Porter, photography by Bill Marchel, Minnesota Historical Society Press
Buddy's Adventures: Lost Bone, Michael J. Perkins, 10,000 Lakes Art
Frog in the House, David Mather, illustrated by Stephanie Mirocha, Raven Productions
Little Minnesota, Kathy-jo Wargin, Sleeping Bear Press
Oh Mighty Mississippi, Melissa Vocelka, illustrated by Amy Larson, North Star Press of St. Cloud
Tales of Lake Superior: A Grandmother's Stories of the North, Juliet Beatrice Lind, illustrated by Joan Henrik, Joan Henrik Design
Unforgettable, Loretta Ellsworth, Walker & Co.
Utterly Otterly Night, Mary Casanova, pictures by Ard Hoyt, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Old Minnesota, Nace Hagemann, Gunflint Trail Productions
Voyageur Skies: Weather and the Wilderness in Minnesota's National Park, photography by Don Breneman and weather commentary by Mark Seeley, Afton Press
Written by Kathleen McQuillan-Hofmann, April 2012