Off the Hook [PB}

Off-Beat Reporter's Tales from Michigan's Upper Peninsula (U.P.)
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Product Details
UPC: 978-1-61599-748-0
Brand: Modern History Press
Binding: Paperback
Edition: 1st
Author: Nancy Besonen
Pages: 180
Publication Date: 10/01/2023

Back in 1981, publisher Ed Danner took a chance, hiring Nancy Besonen, a rookie reporter from Chicago's South Side, for his weekly newspaper, the L'Anse Sentinel. Her humor column, "Off the Hook," was ostensibly all about fishing, but she quickly cut loose, writing about anything relevant to life, especially in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, as long as it made her readers smile.

There's something for everyone with a strong sense of the ridiculous: "Ask Miss Demeanor," "Life's a Breach" and "Baldness: A Growing Concern." Also, "We Make Hay," "Men Are from Mud" and a particularly sensitive piece, "I'm Poopeye the Sailor Mom." From Michigan's tiniest predator, the no-see-um, to life's biggest challenges, like trying to fly into or out of the U.P., Besonen's on the beat.

"Nancy Besonen's weekly columns in the L'Anse Sentinel always made me smile, or chuckle and, quite often, even snort with mirth. Besonen connects so well with our quirky Yooper culture and its priorities. Her perspective of our everyday lives is hilarious and reminiscent of the late Erma Bombeck." -- Terri Martin, author and U.P. Notable Book Award recipient

"A veteran journalist, Nancy Besonen has a wonderful gift for sweet and tangy, humorous writing and storytelling. She uses visual, nuanced language to paint portraits of Michigan's Upper Peninsula's people, places and events, infusing culture, history and geography. Her colorful tales, filled with wit, action, twists and turns, are a must-read for those in Michigan (and beyond), as she inspires us all to think about our own life journeys." -- Martha Bloomfield, award-winning author, oral historian, artist and poet

"Besonen, a gifted journalist who moved north from Chicago for the fishing and brought with her a deep sensibility for the U.P, both teaches and inspires. This is true nonfiction at its best, both wit and investigative journalism. I am glad she collects it here." -- Mack Hassler, former professor of English, Kent State University

"Her 167-page book is full of funny essays on a wide variety of topics - you don't have to be a Yooper to appreciate them. Divided into 18 sub-sections, Besonen's collection covers fishing in 'Hook, Line and Sink Her', getting older in 'Aging Gracelessly' and unusual aspects of nature in 'Call of the Wild'. In 'Reading Marches On', she notes the enjoyment of reading to children: 'The payoff is great, right down to the tiniest grandchild who literally devours books. We just pull the pieces out of her mouth and read to her from what's left.' Besonen's Off the Hook includes two maps for those unfamiliar with Michigan's Upper Peninsula. It's best not to read her book all at once but to savor her writings over a longer timespan." -- Ray Walsh, Lansing State Journal

From Modern History Press

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