The High Cost of Flowers, a novel written by Cynthia Kraack, was recognized as the top book in both the literary fiction and contemporary fiction categories in the Midwest Independent Publishing Association’s 25th Anniversary Midwest Book Awards. The ceremony was held May 13 in St. Paul.
This is Kraack’s fifth novel, but first literary work. The High Cost of Flowers is the story of an American family dealing with end of life issues and dementia of its matriarch while battling personal challenges and relationship difficulties. The Kemper family does its best, but not without sacrifices.
“Being a finalist in two categories was exciting,” said Kraack. “Hearing The High Cost of Flowers called twice as a winner surpassed all my expectations. This book took almost ten years to write. So many people in our workplaces or neighborhoods carry emotional burdens without a lot of support. Managing care of a deteriorating elderly family member can be overwhelming.”
“We are proud to have published The High Cost of Flowers,” said Gary R. Lindberg, CEO of Calumet Editions. “We’re a young publisher with more exposure in genre books. The High Cost of Flowers opened access to new readers for us.”
Experts from all aspects of the book world, including publishers, writers, editors, librarians, teachers and book designers, judge the competition. They select award winners and finalists based on overall excellence. Entries were submitted from a 12-state region including Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska and Ohio.
Kraack’s first novel, Minnesota Cold, won the 2009 Northeastern Minnesota Book Award for Fiction. She has had a number of short stories recognized by national literary publications.