This one’s for the bibliophiles, history buffs and true Springfieldians everywhere. If you’re looking for a deep dive into Springfield’s history, thrilling legal dramas, poetry or prose, there’s a Springfield author with something for you. We’ve noticed a few new books pop up recently that really speak to us as Ozarkers and thought we’d share some reading material for fellow fans of Southwest Missouri.
By James Patterson and Nancy Allen
Springfield resident Nancy Allen teamed up with best-selling author James Patterson to pen this legal novel centering around a young lawyer who works to uncover the secrets of a small Mississippi town. The book immediately became a New York Times Best Seller when it was released in September 2018. Allen’s success with this book is unprecedented for an author from Springfield and we can’t wait to see what she comes up with next. She’s also written several mysteries set in the Ozarks that you can check out here.
By Ethan Bryan, Sophie Bryan and Brad Zweerink
Hot off the presses, this book of poetry, illustrations and beautiful photography is being hailed as a must have for every school library in town by celebrated fellow Springfield author David Harrison. Inside you’ll find poems about what it feels like to eat Andy’s Frozen Custard, out-of-towners asking if you know Brad Pitt, memories of Hydraslide and Alladdin’s Castle and tons more. Perhaps the best thing about this book is its mission. All proceeds go to benefitting the Ozarks Literacy Council to raise awareness and promote literacy in the area. So you can enjoy some great reading and visuals while helping out your community. It’s a win-win!
By Connie Yen
Springfield historian and author Connie Yen takes you through a pictorial history of the Queen City in this book, originally published in 2014. She shares a collection of postcards detailing Springfield’s founding, it’s role in the important rail transit and the eventual growth boom that has lead to what we know today. It’s a great way to gain a further appreciation of your surrounding here in town.
By Crystal Payton
Love SDC? You might enjoy seeing how it all began. Crystal Payton takes you through the years as Silver Dollar City grew in popularity in the Ozarks and became a nationally known brand. This book is an oldie, but a goodie. Payton originally released the book in 1997 and lots has happened since then, so maybe she’ll follow up someday. The early years photos are very interesting!
by Robert Stephens
Ever wonder what the former Mayor of Springfield is up to? Well, Robert Stephens is writing. He was the mayor before the current office holder Ken McClure and since then he’s moved back into private citizenship. His book is a collection of poems about his views on life, aging and plenty more.
Published in 2012, this collection of essays documents the early history of Springfield’s cityhood. McIntyre organized these pieces from a slew of historians to give us a clear picture of our city’s growth and development. Definitely a good read for the buffs out there.
by Shawn Askinosie
Shawn Askinosie hasn’t always been in the chocolate making business. He was a very successful defense lawyer who represented clients in cases that garnered national attention, but decided to follow a passion that was close to his heart. He began the process of chocolate making and found a more fulfilling purpose in the work. The book chronicles his journey from the courtroom to the jungles of Ecuador and back to Springfield. It is written with his daughter Lawren who serves as the director of marketing for Askinosie Chocolate.