​​Path of Wind $17.95 (NEW)

ISBN-9780757004445

Miles Foster is a newly minted teacher who dreams of getting a teaching job in the giant, wealthy Portland, Oregon school system where everything is available, and where he and his wife call home.

 

But the only opening for his talents is in a remote lumber mill town in central Oregon, two hundred miles away. It is a poor school with forty students, and is controlled by a jealous superintendent and school board who tolerate no thinking outside the box and who conspire to destroy his teaching career.

 

Miles must find a way to educate students who have been passed along regardless of what they learned, and defeat the damaging control of the school board and superintendent without losing his marriage or his job, or both. 

 

​​Reviews

 

I have been an ardent fan of all of Jim Misko's novels. They just get better and better as they exhale the soil and soul of Mid-20th century rural America. The Path of the Wind is his latest and best and constantly brings to mind Wallace Stegner. 

I also taught in rural schools during the era Misko is writing about: I knew Miles in many teachers to be the truly dedicated and charming knucklehead that Misko portrays him to be. And, I did know some characters just like Superintendent Calvin Brooks to be the "scoundrels" that they were. 

 

Miskoo literally has you touching, smelling and seeing the Central Oregon countryside and it's small towns. Pick this wonderful and charming book up and you won't put it down.

          Dr. John Bury, former rural schoolteacher and retired professor/dean.

“A truly gifted novelist with a genuine flair for creating deftly created and memorable characters, (Misko’s) The Path of the Wind is a consistently entertaining and highly recommended addition to community library General Fiction collections.”

          Midwest Book Review

 

In the tradition of Jesse Stuart's The Thread That Runs So True and Ivan Doig's The Whistling Season, Jim Misko's The Path of the Wind is an entertaining and insightful novel about the life and times of an American schoolteacher.  What's more, it's a moving love story.  Anyone who's ever taught school or wondered what it would be like to teach will love The Path of the Wind.

          Howard Frank Mosher, author of God’s Kingdom

“I thoroughly enjoyed and read in one day James Misko’s “The Path of the Wind.” The reader is introduced to Miles Foster, a young teacher whose dream is to live and teach in Portland, Oregon. However, he and his loving wife find themselves in a very small remote mill town where 40 ill-trained and uninterested students’ dwell. Miles is unprepared for a deeply mired establishment principal and school board devoid of creative ideas and lacking the mental resources or flexibility to keep the small mill town and school from collapsing.

“I’ve had the pleasure of reading another title by Misko (“As All My Fathers Were”) and when I received “The Path of the Wind” for consideration, I couldn’t wait to get started. When an author leaves an indelible memory recall of a “great read,” my initial thought on his/her next read is: “Will this one be just as good or better?” In the case of “The Path of the Wind,” Misko once again has sealed his place among great authors. His care and forethought toward mapping a storyline is exceptional. His focus on setting the scene for the next exchange of witty and believable dialogue is superb. Misko’s writing ability and homage for the English language is award-worthy and then some! I thoroughly enjoyed this writer’s essence of how a story should be told! Great read!”

          Feathered Quill Book Awards Judge

 

SMALL TOWN, SMALLER MINDS. In a poor, working-class Oregon town, young, progressive teacher Miles Foster must overcome the provincial powers that be if he is to reach his impressionable students—and save his career. The Path of the Wind is a powerful novel by acclaimed author Jim Misko.

          Mike Sirota, award-winning author of Freedom’s Hand and Stone Woman: Winema and the Modocs.

 

“Miles Foster’s first teaching experience in a small rural school was not unlike many teachers who’ve dealt with and continue to deal with small-minded and controlling administrators and towns people who are reluctant to change their ways of thinking about education in general. Miles was trying to “educate” his students, not simply “teach” them.

Jim writes with purpose and creativity and his characters are totally believable. This novel should be a must read for every teacher, educator, and/or administrator, past, present, and future.”                

           Sandy Bennett – retired. Speech therapist/school media specialist

            Milwaukie, Oregon

There were tears in my eyes as I finished reading Jim Misko’s THE PATH OF THE WIND.  They were good tears, the kind that only appear at the satisfying redemption of a protagonist you care about.  Misko is a natural storyteller.  His characters aren’t constructs, but feel like they are flesh and blood.  In Misko’s able hands we are transported to a small town in Central Oregon in the late nineteen-fifties.  A young Jimmy Stewart would have loved playing the role of Miles Foster, a newlywed, a newly minted teacher, and a man willing to pay the cost for trying to revitalize a dying school and town.  Once again, Misko delivers!

            Alan Russell, bestselling author of BURNING MAN

 

“I totally enjoyed The Path of the Wind. Misko shared the true essence of a great teacher. After 30 years in the classroom I found this an inspiring read told eloquently.” 

            Carrie Lassen. (Oregon)

In an unexpected and satisfying ending, Mr. Misko shows that a dedicated, innovative schoolteacher is one of the most valuable of all citizens: teaching our young not just how to make a good living, but how to make a good life.

            James Alexander Thom, author of Follow the River

 

“I thoroughly enjoyed and read in one day James Misko’s “The Path of the Wind.” The reader is introduced to Miles Foster, a young teacher whose dream is to live and teach in Portland, Oregon. However, he and his loving wife find themselves in a very small remote mill town where 40 ill-trained and uninterested students’ dwell. Miles is unprepared for a deeply mired establishment principal and school board devoid of creative ideas and lacking the mental resources or flexibility to keep the small mill town and school from collapsing.

 

In spite of the constant cloud of dysfunction and criticism from the administration and others, Mr. Foster, perseveres with love, patience, caring and dedication, and is able to bring out the best in the students, help them experience self-pride and group success. Appreciation is not his reward but the self-assurance behind the smiling eyes of his students is.”                             

           C. Severns. (Washington)

After having been a teacher for over 23 years and doing battle for my students who were often lost in an uncaring system, I can identify with Jim Misko's Miles Forster and tell you this is a novel that cries to be read not only for its tension and good writing, but for its theme. It's a cause for which a good novel like this will help parents, teachers and yes, students of the future appreciate and support. A must for those looking for a quality read!

          Andrew Neiderman, author of The Devil's Advocate and the V.C. Andrews novels

 

The Path of the Wind is a nostalgic journey back to a simpler world and time--rural, small town America in the 1950s. The hurdles faced by newlywed school teacher Miles Foster are numerous but surmountable: a stodgy school superintendent, his young wife’s difficult pregnancy, students in need of inspiration. In overcoming them, he and the other characters affirm essential values dear to the American spirit. This sweet, unassuming book is a love poem to a past where virtue inevitably triumphs, and small victories tower as monuments. Thanks to Jim Misko’s well-crafted prose, we can practically hear the strains of Tamarack, Oregon’s high school band playing The Battle Hymn of the Republic, and smell the local diner’s cinnamon rolls fresh from the oven.    

          Nick Jans, author of A Wolf Called Romeo and member of USA Today’s board of editorial contributors

 

 

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