"Have you ever dreamed about completely changing your life? Moving across the country with kin, cat and canines to an old house in the woods? And what about changing your profession? Doesn't it sound delightful to become a small village grocer? The Rushing-Simson family certainly thought so, and landed in Vermont with boundless energy and enthusiasm. A year later, which was filled with chickens, killer icicles, skunks, sheep, creative uses for 911, a great deal of mud and misplaced bread, their dreams had changed a bit. This is the hilarious story of a family turning a new leaf, or at least trying to, and Ellen doesn't gloss over much of anything (her hilarious footnotes are pretty much the best part of an already entertaining book). As you read through it, you will feel relieved that it wasn't your family, though, somewhere in your deepest heart, you will also kind of wish it was your family who went through all of these hilariously challenging adventures." ~Jackie--Jackie is our top blogger & manager of our cafe in LoDo
Indie Next ListOctober 2013
Have you ever dreamed of moving to rural Vermont? Imagined the good life away from traffic, noise, and the difficulties of city life? Stimson and her husband did exactly that, moving from St. Louis with children and dogs and cats in tow. By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, Mud Season is the story of their immersion into a small town populated with crusty Vermonters who view 'flatlanders' with a combination of suspicion and amusement. This is a funny, self-deprecating memoir of making a new life in a beautiful place. -- Ellen Burns, Books On The Common, Ridgefield, CT
After a getaway in gorgeous rural Vermont its mountains ablaze in autumnal glory, its Main Streets quaint and welcoming Ellen Stimson and her family make up their minds even before they get back to St. Louis: We re moving to Vermont The reality, they quickly learn, is a little muddier than they'd imagined, but, happily, worth all the trouble."
Praise for Mud Season…
"Stimson’s debut memoir of her first few years in Dorset reads like Erma Bombeck meets E. B. White (with a dash of Elizabeth Gilbert thrown in). She’s a natural storyteller and openhearted lover of her family, her animals, her big chaotic life."
"Ellen Stimson is funny. Darned funny. And she knows how to spin a good, old-fashioned yarn."
"Get your schadenfreude ready. Stimson’s fish-out-of-water memoir is chockablock with self-deprecating, belly-laughable vignettes."
Booklist Starred Review
ADVANCE PRAISE FOR GOOD GRIEF!
“This is my favorite kind of book—a messy, loving, bubbling over at the edges family, replete with exes, dogs, and the tender heart of love and loss. A must-read, never-forget story.”
Jo-Ann Mapson, author of Solomon's Oak, Finding Casey, and Owen's Daughter
“I laughed and cried the whole way through this marvelous, moving, and, above all, joyful book. A chronicle of the further adventures of Ellen Stimson’s eminently lovable family, Good Grief is a lesson in love and loss. It’s impossible not to cheer this gang on.”
Julia Reed, author of But Mama Always Put Vodka in Her Sangria!: Adventures in Eating, Drinking, and Making Merry
“Imagine Jerry Seinfeld and Annie Dillard on the dance floor, gliding gracefully from keenly observed humor to contemplative insight. When the music ends, you feel grateful, lighter, and more compassionate. That dance is Ellen Stimson’s Good Grief—Good Grief taught me to laugh harder and to love better "
BK Loren, author of Theft and Animal, Mineral, Radical
“Both hilarious and poignant, Stimson spins the tales of her ever-eventful small-town Vermont life with a self-effacing, smart, and heart-touching honesty that will make you feel as if you are sitting across from her at her (burned) dining room table—and wishing so much that you really were!”
Suzanne McMinn, author of Chickens in the Road: An Adventure in Ordinary Splendor