In this culture of celebrity, when everyone seems to want to star in a reality television show, the North of the Tension Line series is a tribute to the well-lived life of the ordinary person. We are told daily that the things that matter are fame, and wealth, and the number of followers we have on Twitter or Instagram. But life is really about things that belong to your soul, and to your heart.
These stories are a love song to the Midwest and the people who live there. I was born on the east coast, surrounded by the idea that what happens there is all that matters, that easterners are the engines of our society, and everything else is just flyover country. But after first grade, my family moved to the Midwest, and I grew up there. I have come to believe that the things that really matter in life are the things rooted in Midwest values: integrity, decency, hard work, loving your neighbor, and the minor events that comprise our daily lives. The characters in my books are ordinary people. They are not perfect, but they live out their lives with dignity, and integrity, and beauty, and passion, and humor. Those are the real things in life, not wealth or celebrity.