Coming Soon: Schaffert’s The Swan Gondola!

Pre-order your copy now of Timothy Schaffert’s sweeping historical novel set in 1898 Omaha, The Swan Gondola.

After the breakout success that was his 2011 novel, The Coffins of Little Hope, this latest from one of the most beloved figures of Omaha’s literary scene is very much anticipated. That it’s historically-set in Omaha, so much the better.

Here’s the teaser:

On the eve of the 1898 Omaha World’s Fair, Ferret Skerritt, ventriloquist by trade, con man by birth, isn’t quite sure how it will change him or his city. Omaha still has the marks of a filthy Wild West town, even as it attempts to achieve the grandeur and respectability of nearby Chicago. But when he crosses paths with the beautiful and enigmatic Cecily, his whole purpose shifts and the fair becomes the backdrop to their love affair.

One of a traveling troupe of actors that has descended on the city, Cecily works in the Midway’s Chamber of Horrors, where she loses her head hourly on a guillotine playing Marie Antoinette. And after closing, she rushes off, clinging protectively to a mysterious carpetbag, never giving Ferret a second glance. But a moonlit ride on the swan gondola, a boat on the lagoon of the New White City, changes everything, and the fair’s magic begins to take its effect.

The book is slated for release on Feb 6, 2014, from Riverhead. I for one can’t wait to see the book, and I hope you’ll reserve a copy too. Timothy is really doing his state and city proud, and it’s great to see the well-deserved heights his work is achieving.

The Coffins Makes Its Mark

We went to a book party for Timothy Schaffert’s new novel this weekend, and had a great time, even though our stay was brief. We were there for the hors d’oeuvres, but missed out on the near-tornado. (You can win ’em all.)

If you haven’t checked out The Coffins of Little Hope, Tim’s latest, you really should. Don’t take my word for it, the book has been reviewed in glowing terms by the New York Times, Washington Post, People, Publishers Weekly, and The Millions, among many others.

It’s really been fun to watch the outpouring of enthusiasm for Tim’s work. In addition to writing, Schaffert directs the Nebraska Summer Writers Conference, founded and runs the (downtown) Omaha Lit Fest, teaches at UNL, is the interim Fiction Editor for Prairie Schooner, and, I can only assume, rescues confused kittens that have become trapped in trees. He’s probably the preeminent novelist in Chalco too. In short, he’s a great advocate for writers and writing, and I couldn’t be happier for his success.