Welcome! Whether you're a first-time visitor or long-time friend, I'm glad you found your way here. I'm a writer who's inspired by the people, places, culture, and history of the Midwest.

My Books

One of the best things about writing is the opportunity to share experiences with readers. The stories in my memoir and my historical novel encourage readers to recall their own growing up years and the lives of their ancestors, whether they 'grew up country' or not. Because of the stories readers share with me, I've developed a deep appreciation for the value of preserving everyday stories - the fabric of our lives and culture.

Simple Truth

Angela Darrah gets the job of her dreams only to find her client may be exploiting immigrant employees. With each new revelation, she finds herself questioning not only the client but also herself. Ultimately, she must answer: What is she willing to risk to help someone else?

Go Away Home

Set in World War One-era Iowa, GO AWAY HOME is a captivating coming-of-age novel that explores the enduring themes of family, friendship, and love, as well as death and grief.

Growing up country, by Carol Bodensteiner

Growing Up Country, Memories of an Iowa Farm Girl

GROWING UP COUNTRY delivers a treat as delicious as oatmeal cookies hot out of the oven—a memoir of a happy childhood growing up on a family farm in the middle of the country in the middle of the 20th Century.

On the Blog

What’s Your Dream Reading Space?

By Carol / 28 November 2017 / 14 Comments

Do you have a dream reading space? someone asked me. A place with just the right furniture, light, atmosphere, to allow you to enjoy a good read? I had no immediate response because I’d never thought of reading in a specific place. Reading is part of my life no matter where I am. But the…

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When did you start to read? How did you learn?

By Carol / 21 November 2017 / 10 Comments

I don’t remember how I learned to read. What I do know is that I could read from earliest memory. Books were part of my life, from comics in the daily paper to Saturday-morning trips to the library, from word games to the Weekly Reader summer book club. I was lucky my parents immersed me…

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