Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Bonnie Geisert  

Pen Name: None


Audience: Adult; Young Adult; Children; Children;

Born: 1942 in Hartley, Iowa

-- Website --
-- Bonnie Geisert on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Geisert lives in Galena, Illinois, where she taught for over 20 years.

Biographical and Professional Information

Geisert is a writer and photographer. She has worked as a teacher and a feature writer and columnist for the ''Freeport Journal-Standard'', Freeport, Illinois. Her photographs have appeared in group shows at Dubuque Museum of Art, Eagle Ridge Inn and Resort, Freeport Art Museum, Galena City Hall, Galena Art Festival in 1995, and Group Photography Show-Galena in 1996 and 1997.She has also been a contributor of poetry and articles to ''Lutheran, Cobblestone, Galenian, and Julien's Journal''. Her poetry has been featured in annual poetry anthology, Gallery, Dubuque, Iowa.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

ISBN: 061360766X

San Val. 2003

Prairie Town (Geiserts)
ISBN: 0395859077

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 1998

Shows the workings of a turn-of-the-century prairie town's economy, depicting such scenes as a midsummer pumpkin patch, a backyard full of puppies, and grain elevators across the skyline.

River Town (Small Town U.S.A.)
ISBN: 0395908914

HMH Books for Young Readers. 1999

During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, small towns sprouted up along the banks of America's rivers. Through a year of changing seasons the reader is transported to the days when people's livelihoods were directly connected to the river. The life of the townsfolk is shown to be an accumulation of events both large and small, from a joyous Halloween parade to the frozen river in winter to the threat of damaging springtime floods. Children and adults alike will pour over these pages of intricate etchings, noticing the changes and happenings of day-to-day, season-to-season life lived along a river. As they did in Prairie Town, the Geiserts have once again created a stunning tribute to small-town America as it once was and, to an extent, still remains today.

Mountain Town (Geiserts)
ISBN: 0395953901

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 2000

During the last half of the nineteenth century, miners and prospectors flocked to the Rocky Mountains to find their fortunes. In the wake of this boom, small towns sprouted up wherever the precious ore could be found. Some of these small towns, born of the gold rush, still exist today. This, the third in a series about small-town life, once again turns the commonplace activities of townsfolk into a fascinating account of Americana. Exquisite etchings and spare text are carefully interwoven to create a vivid portrait of life in a mountain town, from snow that comes all year round to Fourth of July celebrations and football games in the fall. Children and adults alike will marvel at the incredibly detailed, panoramic hand-colored etchings that communicate change and the passing of time on each page.

Desert Town (Small Town U.S.A.)
ISBN: 0395953871

HMH Books for Young Readers. 2001

This is the fourth book in the Geiserts’ series on small towns which conveys the wonder and personality of everyday life in the United States.The hot, dry desert town is prone to harsh conditions, but the town is full of life and readers are witness to many cheerful happenings over the course of the year. The Geiserts have once again captured the authenticity and essence of small-town America.

Prairie Summer
ISBN: 0618212930

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 2002

Working hard on the family farm and helping her father whenever she can, ten-year-old Rachel, who despises farm life but does her fair share of the chores anyway, finds that no matter what she does, her father seems to think that she is worthless, in a poignant novel set in the 1950s.

ISBN: 061847899X

HMH Books for Young Readers. 2005

Summer was drawing to a close, and Rachel would soon return to school to begin fifth grade. Like many of her classmates, she was anxious about her friends, the strict Mrs. Kelly, and the timed arithmetic tests, but there was something else worrying Rachel, too. Ever since her baby brother, Matthew, was born, she couldn’t help but notice that her father seemed even more brooding and withdrawn than ever. Confused and concerned by his behavior, Rachel starts demanding answers—but the secret she uncovers raises more questions than it solves.

Author Bonnie Geisert transports readers back to a simpler time and place. Yet life on a rural South Dakota farm in the 1950s was not without its challenges, and Rachel soon discovers she has many lessons to learn, both in Mrs. Kelly’s classroom and beyond . . .

Prairie Winter
ISBN: 061868588X

HMH Books for Young Readers. 2009

The Cresbard school means a lot to sixth grader Rachel Johnson. It means classes with a beloved teacher, important band rehearsals for the upcoming concert in Chicago, and time to hang out with Winnie and Darren and the rest of the town kids. For a twelve year-old living on a remote prairie farm with no phone, school means connection. And that connection is about to be severed. The most dangerous winter that Rachel has ever known is about to descend on Cresbard, marooning her on the farm and keeping her from the school she so desperately loves.

Then, in a surprising turn of events, Rachel’s dad agrees to fly his three oldest daughters to town so they can continue the school year. Rachel will be boarding in a hotel with no parents, no rules, and no chores. Her choice of desserts every night, two-stepping with Darren Baxter at the school dance . . .will Rachel ever be able to return to farm life after this?


''Prairie Summer'', Honor Book for Young People, Nebraska Center for the Book ''Haystack'' Honor Award for Children's Nonfiction, Boston Globe/Hornbook

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)