Saturday, September 15, 2012

Book Review and Interview with Barbara K. Richardson - Author of TRIBUTARY

Barbara K. Richardson
Publishing Date: September 15th, 2012
PRICE: $15.95

CONTACT PHONE: 801-810-9847

ISBN: 978-1-937226-04-6 / $15.95 / 352 pages / Trade Paperback / September 15, 2012
I have delivered sailboats, sold pup tents, herded sixth graders and planted hundreds of beautiful trees as a residential landscape designer, all in order to write. If you long to debunk your ego, writing is the perfect path.

Guest House--my first novel--brings together kids I have taught, cities I have loved, women I've admired and the ongoing motivation to see, honor and make good homes for neglected children. I also hoped to expose the wiles of a narcissist, for the benefit of any readers plagued by one.

My upcoming novel, Tributary, answers a question that haunted my youth: whatever happened to the ones who got away? Clair Martin, raised in the polygamous Utah Territory, dares to find her own line to follow through life. Based on accounts of my ancestors' lives, Tributary took twenty years to complete. I'm delighted to see it come to print this autumn.

There are writers whose sensibilities elevate the whole human enterprise. I aim to be one of them.

Watch for the Between the Pages' review of TRIBUTARY on September 15th 

Lynda's Review:
WOW! I'm exhausted after reading Tributary by Barbara K Richardson. All through the reading of this book, I felt as though I were Clair Martin. That takes a great writer who is able to create a character and give that character such a deep point-of-view that the reader becomes assimilated by that character. It's a wonderful reading experience, but totally draining... Be sure to have plenty of high protein snacks by your side, like chocolate and ice cream. LOL

The story line delves into personal beliefs and concepts that form the foundations of our lives. It shows what responsibilities personal choice thrusts upon us. Clair Martin's journey is fraught with such choices. As a reader, we will all have our own opinions about this character. She'll either be seen as an independent, courageous individual who is willing to take risks to achieve, what for her, is a happy and stable life, or, she'll be perceived as having turned her back on community and family values. 

Don't be afraid to take the opportunity of reading an altogether different and compelling story. I wouldn't be surprised that, sometime in the future, we see this book in movie form. It has all the right ingredients, adventurous setting, complex plotting, and great characters. 

I give this book five stars!

Barbara, thank you so much for taking time from your busy schedule to answer a few questions for our readers her at Between The Pages.

How did you start writing Tributary? What inspired you to begin?

Strangely, I had just finished my MFA in poetry. After two years of workshops and study, I was exhausted. A friend went walking with me, and out of the blue he said, “Why don’t you write a novel?” Which seemed preposterous. But it pierced me. One week later, Clair and Ada showed up in a dream. I was a gonner, I had to tell their story. I lost a lot of sleep taking notes from Clair and Ada for the next few years.

So your characters speak to you?

Oh, yes. If they aren’t speaking, I need to be quieter. A writer has to be willing to receive as well as give.

The setting for Tributary seems  like a main character. Did you grow up in Brigham City?

No, but all of my ancestors did.  When I was a kid, we visited my grandparents in Brigham City. My family wasn’t devout. But I do believe my sister and I found god in the mossy freezing irrigation ditch that ran around the Tabernacle. I wore out more than one pair of cutoffs, sliding giddily down that ditch. It is a magical place.

There are moments of magic in Tributary. Can you tell us about that?

Real Magicalism is the literary school Clair Martin would found, if she could. Magic is everywhere. We’ve grown so hardened and set in our views we nearly always miss it. The Shoshone worldview embraces that magic—the elements and creatures of earth aren’t separate from us, they’re our self. We can draw sustenance from and be taught by them. When we believe in receiving wisdom and inspiration on a daily basis from our surroundings, it is a whole different world. Clair gets a taste of that world in Tributary. As impossible as it may seem at times, as full of conflict as our lives are, we can learn to live within the blessedness of existence. It is ours to do. It is our human gift. We can all wake up a little and ground ourselves in everyday magic. It is available. We do have to pay attention to receive it.

Visit Barbara’s blog to get Clair Martin’s yummy recipe for Clair’s Windfall Applesauce.


  1. Sounds like a great book. Thanks for your thoughts and the review. Hope you have a great weekend!

    Diane :O)

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Diane. Tributary is definitely a good read.

  3. The story sounds really interesting, will have to check it out soon.