Search for the Next Great Montana Read Announced

August 01, 2019

MISSOULA – The search is beginning for the next Great Montana Read. This year, MontanaPBS and Montana Public Radio are asking readers to vote for their favorite book of nonfiction prose.

Sarah Aronson, host of Montana Public Radio’s “The Write Question” said a panel of seven Montana literary experts chose from a number of books for voters to consider.

“We’re excited that the whole state will begin conversations around their favorite Montana books,” Aronson said. “The Great Montana Read is an exciting collaboration, encouraging conversation and celebration around the Treasure State’s rich literary tradition.”

The 10 books nominated by the experts are:

  • “Winter” by Rick Bass
  • “All But the Waltz” by Mary Clearman Blew
  • “Breaking Clean” by Judy Blunt
  • “Counting Coup” by Larry Colton
  • “This House of Sky” by Ivan Doig
  • “Indian Creek Chronicles” by Pete Fromm
  • “Last Best Place” by Editors William Kittredge and Annick Smith
  • “Young Men and Fire” by Normal Maclean
  • “Homestead” by Annick Smith
  • “Killing Custer” by James Welch (editor Paul Stekler) 

Starting in September, each book will be profiled on-air, on station websites and on social media. Aronson will write and host the video segments. Montanans will vote for their favorite online at

Last year, the Great Montana Read asked voters to pick their favorite book of fiction. “Perma Red” by author and University of Montana Professor Debra Magpie Earling was voted the No. 1 book, followed by “A River Runs Through It” by Norman Maclean and “This House of Sky” by Ivan Doig. More than 2,500 votes were cast on the MontanaPBS website.

Partners for the Great Montana Read include the Montana Library Association, Humanities Montana, UM, the UM Mansfield Library, the UM Creative Writing Department, Yellowstone Public Radio, Montana State University Library, MontanaPBS and Montana Public Radio.

MontanaPBS (KUFM-TV in Missoula, KUSM-TV in Bozeman, KUKL-TV in Kalispell, KBGS-TV in Billings, KUGF-TV in Great Falls and KUHM-TV in Helena) is a service of UM and Montana State University. For more information visit



Contact: Sarah Aronson, “The Write Question” host, 406-243-4931,; Ray Ekness, Broadcast Media Center director, 406-243-4154,