Private Way


Private Way

A Novel

Ladette Randolph

Flyover Fiction Series

242 pages


March 2022


$21.95 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

March 2022


$21.95 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

March 2022


$21.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

2023 Nebraska Book Award

In 2015, when cyberbullies disrupt her life in Southern California, Vivi Marx decides to cut her cord with the internet and take her life offline for a year. She flees to the one place where she felt safe as a child—with her grandmother in Lincoln, Nebraska. Nevermind that her grandmother is long dead and she doesn’t know anyone else in the state. Even before she meets her new neighbors on Fieldcrest Drive, Vivi knows she’s made a terrible mistake, but every plan she makes to leave is foiled. Despite her efforts to outrun it, trouble follows her to Nebraska, just not in the ways she’d feared. With the help of her neighbors, Willa Cather’s novels, and her own imagination, Vivi finds something she hadn’t known she was searching for.

Author Bio

Ladette Randolph is the editor in chief of Ploughshares magazine and is distinguished publisher-in-residence at Emerson College. She is the author of several books, including This is Not the Tropics (Nebraska, 2022), Haven’s Wake (Bison Books, 2013), A Sandhills Ballad (Bison Books, 2011), and Leaving the Pink House.


“A wonderfully wise, vividly written, and deeply absorbing novel that delves into Willa Cather’s question about what is required of ‘a civilized society.’ By turns funny, reflective, and harrowing . . . Private Way is that rare novel that acknowledges the real hazards of civic life while also celebrating its transformative power.”—Suzanne Berne, author of The Dogs of Littlefield: A Novel

“Ladette Randolph carefully attends to quiet revelations. As with her previous evocative work, the seeming periphery of Nebraska centers the story as the state continues to transform, in unexpected places, for those who take the time to look.”—Gretchen E. Henderson, author of The House Enters the Street

“In richly evocative prose Ladette Randolph describes the triumphs and failures of Vivi’s new life offline. With its complicated characters and lovely evocations of Nebraska, Private Way is a surprising and utterly absorbing novel.”—Margot Livesey, author of The Boy in the Field

“Vivi’s wished-for privacy is challenged by a community teeming with unforgettable characters. . . . Here, in the company of the novels of Willa Cather, Vivi endures a record-setting Nebraska winter that challenges her to abandon her usual mode of evasion and secrecy. And therein lies the heart of Private Way.”—Pamela Painter, author of Fabrications: New and Selected Stories

Table of Contents

Author's Note
1. Empty Houses
2. Pie Girl
3. No Empty Threats
4. Like Madness
5. A Spy in the Hinterland
6. How Mary Garlic Ruined Mary Garth for Me
7. Imaginary Family
8. Brain Fog
9. You’d Be So Pretty If Only
10. Gazetteer Nebraska
11. Tillie’s Wonderland
12. Give-Me-a-Break Potluck
13. Buffy the Vampire Slayer Kills on Fieldcrest Drive
14. One Little Life
15. The Storm That Was a Mother to Me
16. Go-To Neighbor
17. Ivan the Czech Guy
18. Road Trip to Catherland
19. Thanksgiving in the Czech Capital of the USA
20. Where Ivan Outs Me
21. Maybe It’s a Ghost After All
22. The Part Where Ivan Brings a Pie
23. Our Non-Traditions
24. There’s Cold and Then There’s Cold
25. Bliss = Bill
26. Too Fine a Cut
27. Spring Clean Up, Spring Screw-Up
28. A Kolache Action
29. Chuck’s Not-So-Funny Tales of Sexual Humiliation
30. A Lady Lost
31. My Mortal Enemies
32. Pies4Peace


2023 Nebraska Book Award

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