New children’s book features settings, characters from Monona’s past

MONONA — Monona’s past has come alive in storybook form thanks to the work of a first-time author who grew up just outside the city.

Mary Emma, Walk!” was written by Nancy Marshall, who now makes her home in the Storm Lake area, and published by Beaver’s Pond Press. 

“For years I thought Mary Emma was a cute name for a storybook character and I got busy raising a family and didn’t really do anything with it. Then when our youngest son was in college … I’m not really sure where the inspiration for the name, the walk, came from but once I got that figured out it didn’t take long to get the rest of the story,” Marshall said.

The book is based in Monona, though it also has settings inspired by locations along the Mississippi River in McGregor. The book’s main character is based Marshall’s mother, Mildred Waalk Grady, though the name comes from her grandmother, Mary Emma Waalk.

Read the full article in the Wednesday, July 4, 2018 edition of The Outlook.