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Binding: Hardcover
ISBN: 978-1-57131-100-9
Pages: 464
Publish Date: May 2013
Genre: Fiction


A Novel

BY David Rhodes

When David Rhodes burst onto the American literary scene in the seventies, he was hailed as a “brilliant visionary” (John Gardner), and compared to Sherwood Anderson. With Driftless, “the best work of fiction to come out of the Midwest in many years” (Alan Cheuse), Rhodes brought Words, Wisconsin, to life in a way that resonated with readers across America. Now, with Jewelweed, this beloved author returns to the Driftless Region, and introduces a cast of characters who all find themselves struggling to find a new sense of belonging in the present moment—sometimes with the help of peach preserves or mashed potato pie.

Rich with a sense of empathy and wonder, Jewelweed offers a vision in which the ordinary becomes mythical, and the seemingly mundane is transformed into revelatory beauty.



  • Watch David Rhodes talk about his life, why he writes, and his latest novel Jewelweed

  • Hear David Rhodes read from Jewelweed

  • Hear Kerri Miller interview David Rhodes on Minnesota Public Radio show The Daily Circuit

  • Reading Jewelweed for a book club or class? Keep the discussion lively with this reading group guide.






When David Rhodes' first three novels were published in the mid-seventies, he was acclaimed as "one of the best eyes in recent fiction" (John Gardner), and compared favorably to Sherwood Anderson.
Read more ›


The Last Fair Deal Going Down

Originally published in 1972, the debut novel from the acclaimed author of Driftless.
Read more ›


Rock Island Line

First published in 1975, a rediscovered epic novel.
Read more ›


The Easter House

From the celebrated author of Driftless, a masterful and suspenseful novel.
Read more ›



The follow-up to the critically acclaimed Midwestern magical realism novel, Driftless.
Read more ›

Editorial ReviewGoodreads Review

"[A] deeply moving meditation on the resonance of each individual life on a small Wisconsin town."

Wisconsin State Journal

"Jewelweed is a novel of forgiveness, a generous ode to the spirit's indefatigable longing for love."

Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Reminiscent of Steinbeck, with a little touch of Michener.”

—Alan Cheuse, National Public Radio’s All Things Considered

“A damn fine novel—one of the best kinds—where ordinary people living ordinary lives are drawn by the deft and lyrical touch of the author in such an achingly rich way, one quietly marvels."

Sheryl Cotleur, Copperfield’s Books, Sebastopol, California

“Rhodes describes the natural world and his characters’ inner lives with equal passion, creating an ensemble as natural to its landscape as the trees. Jewelweed is a remarkable piece of storytelling, soul-felt and deeply moving.”

—Mark Laframboise, Politics & Prose Bookstore, Washington, DC

“David Rhodes takes seemingly mundane events, and makes them magic. The everyday is made spectacular through his telling.”

—Jack Hannert, Brilliant Books, Traverse City, Michigan

“From philosophical prison inmates to childhood-haunted truckers, Rhodes’s me%u0301lange of characters feels so real, you’d swear you lived among them.”

—Emily Crowe, The Odyssey Bookshop, South Hadley, Massachusetts

“With Jewelweed, David Rhodes has once more produced a moving, deeply thoughtful novel, of poor people doing difficult things, often against their best interests. He is the same writer, maybe better, as the author of Driftless.”

—Paul Ingram, Prairie Lights Books, Iowa City, Iowa

"Filled with empathy and wonder, where the seemingly mundane is transformed into revelatory beauty, Jewelweed captures the heart of flawed individuals whose experiences resonate universally."

The Decorah Newspapers


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David Rhodes

David Rhodes wrote three novels in the 1970s, gaining recognition as "one of the best eyes in recent fiction" (John Gardner). An accident that paralyzed him from the chest down began a 32 year publishing hiatus for Rhodes, broken by his recent book, Driftless.

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