The Ozark Trilogy


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About this book

The Ozark Trilogy (previously published in 1981, Doubleday) is a widely acclaimed fantasy/science fiction story with, as the title suggests, very strong ties to the Ozark region. Twelve Fair Kingdoms, The Grand Jubilee, And Then There’ll Be Fireworks—the books that comprise the trilogy—chronicle life on the planet Ozark and its Confederation of Continents, which are appropriately named Arkansaw, Oklahomah, Mizzurah, Tinaseeh, Kintucky, and Marktwain. However, the story told here involves much more than a mere transplant of Ozark culture and heritage onto a new planet. While this new Ozark culture maintains and even intensifies many of the “real” Ozark traditions and customs (for instance, “Grannys” hold significant, stabilizing social roles and are important sources of wisdom), the planet Ozark combines many new, fantastical elements with traditional ways. Mules on Ozark fly, and the wise “Grannys” also work magic.


The protagonist of The Ozark Trilogy, Responsible of Brightwater, appears at the center of Ozark society, a society she must save from evil magic, civil war, and, ultimately, alien invasion. As Responsible travels from continent to continent in an attempt to discover and squelch the evil magic and calm the civil unrest, we are witness to many dangerous and sometimes comical adventures along the way, including a spectacular flying Mule crash and a magic duel with a Granny gone bad.


Elgin has created a fantastic world infused with the folk traditions, social and familial hierarchies, and traditional dialect of the Ozarks. While parallels might be drawn between, for example, the break-up of the Confederacy of Continents on planet Ozark and the American Civil War, Elgin comments on aspects of Ozark history and tradition in a non didactic way. The trilogy, with its strong heroine and witty engagement of tradition, is a classic of Ozark literature.

About the author

Suzette Haden Elgin lives in Huntsville, Arkansas. She has a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of California, San Diego, and is the author of many other works of fiction and nonfiction, including The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense.


“Magic abounds in this tale of 12 mountain families who left Earth to settle the planet Ozark. . . . Elgin has created a delightful world built around Ozark folklore, where science and magic are expertly combined and the characters are delineated with a few pungent words. Highly recommended.”

Library Journal