The Winter Loon by Lori Henriksen
Publisher: Cougar Creek Books
2017 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards Silver Winner in the LGBT Category
B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree
Finalist in the Self Publishing Review Awards 2017
Finalist in the Golden Crown Literary Society - Debut Novel and Historical Fiction
Women’s Fiction Writers Association Star Award Finalist Debut Category
In the shadow of the Great Depression, long before historical changes leading toward LGBTQ advocacy and equality, eighteen-year-old Ruth Thompson defies her family's expectations to marry Duke, her long-time sweetheart. Instead, she joins a rodeo circuit in order to earn money for college and comes of age in the male-dominated culture of rodeo competition.
Ruth returns home to Minnesota a prize-winning competitor and resumes her familiar relationship with Duke. Once at college she grows increasingly restless in her role as sorority girl with Duke as her escort for all social occasions. Her safe existence is upended when she meets confident and free-spirited Gisela and then further unravels when the two women fall in love.
The lives of Ruth, Gisela, and Duke entwine while Ruth embarks on a journey of self-discovery, full of dangerous social repercussions that takes her from Minnesota to the Pacific Ocean of California. As WWII escalates, each of them faces a test of their fortitude as all three must come to grips with redemption, forgiveness, the meaning of family and how to honor their authentic truth during this perilous time in history.
Both heart wrenching and uplifting, The Winter Loon honors the strength and spirit of all those who struggle with social persecution because of who they love and how they define family whether it is their own flesh and blood kinfolk and/or those nearest and dearest to their heart.
Praise for The Winter Loon:
"The Winter Loon is a compelling story of a woman's secrets, choices, and courage. Both tender and wise, Henriksen is a fine storyteller and her characters are skillfully drawn and memorable." ~Sandra Butler, award-winning writer, group facilitator and activist. sandrabutler.net. motheringdaughters.net.
"The Winter Loon is an ambitious, gripping, often painful story with a lot of drama and emotion, ups and downs and an ending that leaves the reader in satisfying tears." ~Alan Rinzler
"What a beautiful, thoughtful book. The Winter Loon offers up complex characters and issues, a multi-textured plot and lots of heart. I have felt wrapped in the cocoon of this beautiful love story." ~Alissa Lukara
About the Author
A retired family therapist, Lori Henriksen believes in the influence of past generations and is convinced that we have the potential to strengthen and transform ourselves through the power of story. Her debut novel, The Winter Loon, about the healing power of love, is inspired by her mother’s life. She lives in the foothills of the Siskiyou Mountains of Southern Oregon with her husband Patrick, two rescue dogs and a reformed feral cat turned couch potato.