South of Superior

By Ellen Airgood
(Riverhead Books, Paperback, 9781594485763, 374pp.)

Publication Date: May 1, 2012

List Price: $16.00*
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A debut novel full of heart, in which love, friendship, and charity teach a young woman to live a bigger life.
When Madeline Stone walks away from Chicago and moves five hundred miles north to the coast of Lake Superior, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, she isn't prepared for how much her life will change.
Charged with caring for an aging family friend, Madeline finds herself in the middle of beautiful nowhere with Gladys and Arbutus, two octogenarian sisters-one sharp and stubborn, the other sweeter than sunshine. As Madeline begins to experience the ways of the small, tight-knit town, she is drawn into the lives and dramas of its residents. It's a place where times are tough and debts run deep, but friendship, community, and compassion run deeper. As the story hurtles along--featuring a lost child, a dashed love, a car accident, a wedding, a fire, and a romantic reunion--Gladys, Arbutus, and the rest of the town teach Madeline more about life, love, and goodwill than she's learned in a lifetime.
A heartwarming novel, "South of Superior" explores the deep reward in caring for others, and shows how one who is poor in pocket can be rich in so many other ways, and how little it often takes to make someone happy.

About the Author
Ellen Airgood runs a diner in Grand Marais, Michigan. She is the author of South of Superior.

Conversation Starters from


  1. Gladys always tells Madeline how much of an outsider she is, how much she doesn't understand the ways of McAllester. By the end of the novel do you think Madeline is a part of the town? In what ways has she let the community of McAllester transform her? In what way has she transformed the community?

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