To the Stars Through Difficulties

by Romalyn Tilghman (Author)

A Kansas Notable Book of the Year, 2018

Book Description:​

A Kansas Notable Book of the Year, 2018 Andrew Carnegie funded fifty-nine public libraries in Kansas in the early 20th century―but it was frontier women who organized waffle suppers, minstrel shows, and women’s baseball games to buy books to fill them. Now, a century later, Angelina returns to her father’s hometown of New Hope to complete her dissertation on the Carnegie libraries, just as Traci and Gayle arrive in town―Traci as an artist-in-residence at the renovated Carnegie Arts Center and Gayle as a refugee whose neighboring town, Prairie Hill, has just been destroyed by a tornado. The discovery of an old journal inspires the women to create a library and arts center as the first act of rebuilding Prairie Hill after the tornado. As they work together to raise money for the center, Traci reveals her enormous heart, Angelina discovers that problem-solving is more valuable than her PhD, and Gayle demonstrates that courage is not about waiting out a storm but building a future. Full of Kansas history―from pioneer homesteaders to Carrie Nation to orphan trains―To the Stars through Difficulties is a contemporary story of women changing their world, and finding their own voices, powers, and self-esteem in the process.

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2017 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards: Finalist 2017 IPPY Awards: Contemporary Fiction, Gold Medal Readers' Favorite: Gold Medal Award for Women's Fiction 2017 Foreword Indie Finalist in Adult Fiction―General 2018 Next Generation Indie Book Awards Finalist in General Fiction/Novel (Over 80,000 words) Pulpwood Queen Selection, June 2018 "... this charming debut will appeal to women’s-fiction fans of gentle reads." ―Booklist ". . . this warmhearted first novel celebrates the value of community (and libraries!); the inspirational story of women past and present is a must-buy for Kansas libraries and recommended for general adult readers."

Romalyn Tilghman (Author)

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Straight out of graduate school, Romalyn Tilghman was hired as Executive Director of the Association of Community Arts Councils of Kansas and was lucky enough to work with rural arts councils throughout the state. She saw first-hand how groups of (mostly) women encouraged culture on the Plains. From there, she went on to work for the National Endowment for the Arts as Regional Representative, eventually serving a territory that stretched over the Dateline, over the Equator, and over the Arctic Circle. She has worked as a free-lance consultant in the arts – conducting strategic planning, initiating audience engagement projects, and assessing grant programs for nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and private foundations. She has served on the boards of Americans for the Arts, Association of California Symphony Orchestras, international Performing Arts for Youth, and Western Arts Alliance, as well as on numerous national panels. To the Stars through Difficulties is her first novel.

To the Stars Through Difficulties

2017 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards: Finalist 2017 IPPY Awards: Contemporary Fiction, Gold Medal Readers' Favorite: Gold Medal Award for Women's Fiction 2017 Foreword Indie Finalist in Adult Fiction―General 2018 Next Generation Indie Book Awards Finalist in General Fiction/Novel (Over 80,000 words) Pulpwood Queen Selection, June 2018 "... this charming debut will appeal to women’s-fiction fans of gentle reads." ―Booklist ". . . this warmhearted first novel celebrates the value of community (and libraries!); the inspirational story of women past and present is a must-buy for Kansas libraries and recommended for general adult readers."

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