Path of Totality, a novel
Path of Totality is a literary fiction, magical realism novel set in the aftermath of the Vietnam War, when America has all but forgotten. The story weaves a tapestry of timelines and characters (First Nations, Caucasian, and African American) whose destinies converge at the February 26, 1979 total solar eclipse, where a timeless homecoming bursts into light under a Montana sky. 171,000 words
In August of 1978, along a Southern Minnesota highway, a wounded Vietnam Veteran of mixed heritage—Ojibwe and White—is at the end of his rope. On his way back from a funeral, he witnesses a 1973 Dodge Dart barrel into the rest area where he's holed up and crash into the ladies restroom. Inside that car a photograph has travelled a beam of light and materialized on the front seat—an imperfectly delivered intervention through the crosswinds of space-time by two older women living in a Montana otherworld and having surprising ties to the soldier.
Barely conscious behind the wheel is his childhood friend, the girl he'd known for seven days in the summer of 1962, the one who'd seen inside his spirit. The photograph is of him as a boy, and the first of eleven that will arrive mysteriously inside her moving vehicle from her long-lost childhood camera. The once awkward, curly-blonde-headed nine-year-old has grown into a radiant young woman. Her reappearance after sixteen years throws off his state of affairs as she becomes a catalyst for his path of healing. Amid turmoil and separation, and a re-examination of what they'd witnessed as children on the movie screen inside the Gem Theatre, they find a way to rekindle their friendship, unravel the mystery behind the photographs, and learn to love each other again—as adults.
Photo from cover of Life Magazine of the February 26, 1979 total solar eclipse
Novel research IMAGES
(vintage postcards and photos)
Launch Pad Manuscript Competition 2020
FEEDBACK on first 50 pages incl. outline