Books set in Wisconsin

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September 27, 2022
Goodreads

Books set in Wisconsin

Every state has its hallmark writers. Mississippi has William Faulkner and his incomparable (fictional) Yoknapatawpha County and Missouri can lay claim to Mark Twain. The state of Maine is gifted with Pulitzer winner Richard Russo and horror icon Stephen King. Rural Pennsylvania is the playground of the much-heralded (and occasionally maligned) John Updike, and when many bibliophiles think of New Jersey, they also think of Richard Ford's series of novels featuring recurring Everyman character Frank Bascombe. Illinois can lay claim to William Maxwell, Sandra Cisneros, and Adam Langer, among numerous others. And what reader can think of Washington State without contending with the sparkle-vampire yarns of Stephanie Meyer?

What makes authors like these inextricably associated with a particular state is not simply the matter of their having been born there or choosing to live there. The connection, from a writerly standpoint, is deeper than that—their work, nearly all of it, is set in "their" state.

Of course, there are certainly exceptions. Whether a writer sets a tale in the town where they went to college or spent part of their childhood—like Donna Tartt's "The Secret History" and its New England arts school setting and the almost-factual small town of Jo Ann Beard's "In Zanesville," respectively—or crafts a story that follows a social or political theme to a location they know little about but lay narrative claim to anyway, the world is rife with books known, loved, and respected that also capture the essence of place—books where setting itself is one of the strongest characters.

Stacker compiled a list of books set in Wisconsin from Goodreads. Whether you're looking for a good read set in the state you call home, or you're looking to expand your curiosity with a writer you're already familiar with, we've got you covered.

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Goodreads

Little House in the Big Woods (Little House, #1)

- Rating: 4.19 (253,810 ratings)
- Author: Laura Ingalls Wilder
- Published: January 1, 1932
- Genres: Classics, Historical Fiction, Childrens, Fiction
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2 / 50
Goodreads

American Gods (American Gods, #1)

- Rating: 4.11 (856,237 ratings)
- Author: Neil Gaiman
- Published: June 19, 2001
- Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Urban Fantasy, Mythology
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3 / 50
Goodreads

Population: 485 : Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time

- Rating: 3.93 (5,322 ratings)
- Author: Michael Perry
- Published: October 1, 2002
- Genres: Nonfiction, Memoir, Biography, Humor
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4 / 50
Goodreads

The Westing Game

- Rating: 4.01 (195,893 ratings)
- Author: Ellen Raskin
- Published: June 1, 1978
- Genres: Mystery, Young Adult, Fiction, Middle Grade
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5 / 50
Goodreads

The Art of Fielding

- Rating: 3.98 (111,419 ratings)
- Author: Chad Harbach
- Published: September 7, 2011
- Genres: Fiction, Sports, Baseball, Contemporary
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Goodreads

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle

- Rating: 3.63 (96,740 ratings)
- Author: David Wroblewski
- Published: June 1, 2008
- Genres: Fiction, Animals, Dogs, Adult Fiction
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7 / 50
Goodreads

Dairy Queen (Dairy Queen, #1)

- Rating: 3.74 (27,689 ratings)
- Author: Catherine Gilbert Murdock
- Published: May 22, 2006
- Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Sports, Romance
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8 / 50
Goodreads

A Map of the World

- Rating: 3.81 (72,474 ratings)
- Author: Jane Hamilton
- Published: May 1, 1992
- Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Literary Fiction, Adult Fiction
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9 / 50
Goodreads

A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There

- Rating: 4.29 (28,612 ratings)
- Author: Aldo Leopold
- Published: January 1, 1949
- Genres: Nonfiction, Nature, Science, Environment
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Goodreads

Crossing to Safety

- Rating: 4.16 (42,864 ratings)
- Author: Wallace Stegner
- Published: January 1, 1987
- Genres: Fiction, Classics, Literary Fiction, Novels
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Goodreads

Blankets

- Rating: 4.05 (109,137 ratings)
- Author: Craig Thompson
- Published: July 23, 2003
- Genres: Graphic Novels, Comics, Fiction, Young Adult
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Goodreads

Drowning Ruth

- Rating: 3.75 (81,737 ratings)
- Author: Christina Schwarz
- Published: January 1, 2000
- Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Historical Fiction, Contemporary
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13 / 50
Goodreads

Caddie Woodlawn (Caddie Woodlawn, #1)

- Rating: 4.01 (50,699 ratings)
- Author: Carol Ryrie Brink
- Published: January 1, 1935
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Childrens, Classics, Fiction
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14 / 50
Goodreads

A Reliable Wife

- Rating: 3.27 (77,874 ratings)
- Author: Robert Goolrick
- Published: January 1, 2009
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Mystery, Historical
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15 / 50
Goodreads

The Deep End of the Ocean (Cappadora Family, #1)

- Rating: 3.87 (118,558 ratings)
- Author: Jacquelyn Mitchard
- Published: January 1, 1996
- Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Contemporary, Chick Lit
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Goodreads

The Coincidence of Coconut Cake

- Rating: 3.71 (17,462 ratings)
- Author: Amy E. Reichert
- Published: July 21, 2015
- Genres: Romance, Fiction, Chick Lit, Contemporary
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17 / 50
Goodreads

Wisconsin Death Trip

- Rating: 4.01 (1,694 ratings)
- Author: Michael Lesy
- Published: January 1, 1973
- Genres: History, Nonfiction, Photography, True Crime
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Goodreads

A Prayer for the Dying

- Rating: 4.00 (2,862 ratings)
- Author: Stewart O'Nan
- Published: January 1, 1999
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Horror, Historical
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19 / 50
Goodreads

Visiting Tom: A Man, a Highway, and the Road to Roughneck Grace

- Rating: 4.08 (1,281 ratings)
- Author: Michael Perry
- Published: August 21, 2012
- Genres: Nonfiction, Memoir, Biography, Humor
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20 / 50
Goodreads

What the Moon Said

- Rating: 3.94 (593 ratings)
- Author: Gayle Rosengren
- Published: February 20, 2014
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Middle Grade, Historical, Fiction
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Goodreads

Thimble Summer

- Rating: 3.74 (7,457 ratings)
- Author: Elizabeth Enright
- Published: January 1, 1938
- Genres: Fiction, Childrens, Historical Fiction, Middle Grade
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Goodreads

Better Off Friends

- Rating: 3.89 (30,257 ratings)
- Author: Elizabeth Eulberg
- Published: February 25, 2014
- Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
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23 / 50
Goodreads

Revival, Vol. 1: You're Among Friends

- Rating: 3.86 (8,472 ratings)
- Author: Tim Seeley
- Published: December 12, 2012
- Genres: Graphic Novels, Comics, Horror, Zombies
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Goodreads

Seventeenth Summer

- Rating: 3.12 (4,557 ratings)
- Author: Maureen Daly
- Published: January 1, 1942
- Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Fiction, Classics
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Goodreads

Ditch Flowers

- Rating: 3.59 (225 ratings)
- Author: Amanda Linsmeier
- Published: September 15, 2015
- Genres: Fiction, Marriage, Chick Lit, Womens Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads

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Goodreads

Sister

- Rating: 3.58 (675 ratings)
- Author: A. Manette Ansay
- Published: January 1, 1996
- Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Literary Fiction
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Goodreads

Driftless

- Rating: 3.92 (4,334 ratings)
- Author: David Rhodes
- Published: September 1, 2008
- Genres: Fiction, Book Club, Contemporary, Novels
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28 / 50
Goodreads

Dead Angler (A Loon Lake Mystery, #1)

- Rating: 3.79 (1,629 ratings)
- Author: Victoria Houston
- Published: April 1, 2000
- Genres: Mystery, Fiction, Cozy Mystery, Crime
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Goodreads

Whistling in the Dark

- Rating: 3.89 (11,853 ratings)
- Author: Lesley Kagen
- Published: May 1, 2007
- Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Historical Fiction, Coming Of Age
- Read more on Goodreads
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Goodreads

American Wife

- Rating: 3.76 (55,997 ratings)
- Author: Curtis Sittenfeld
- Published: September 2, 2008
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Chick Lit, Politics
- Read more on Goodreads

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Goodreads

Weird Wisconsin: Your Travel Guide to Wisconsin's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets

- Rating: 3.99 (259 ratings)
- Author: Linda S. Godfrey
- Published: February 7, 2012
- Genres: Travel, Nonfiction, Paranormal, History
- Read more on Goodreads
32 / 50
Goodreads

Rascal

- Rating: 4.15 (12,963 ratings)
- Author: Sterling North
- Published: January 1, 1963
- Genres: Animals, Fiction, Childrens, Classics
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Goodreads

Hope Was Here

- Rating: 4.01 (20,242 ratings)
- Author: Joan Bauer
- Published: September 11, 2000
- Genres: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Fiction, Contemporary
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Goodreads

Ida B. . . and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World

- Rating: 3.88 (23,088 ratings)
- Author: Katherine Hannigan
- Published: January 1, 2004
- Genres: Realistic Fiction, Fiction, Middle Grade, Childrens
- Read more on Goodreads
35 / 50
Goodreads

Amazon Ink (Amazon, #1)

- Rating: 3.52 (623 ratings)
- Author: Lori Devoti
- Published: May 1, 2009
- Genres: Urban Fantasy, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance
- Read more on Goodreads

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Goodreads

Go, Gwen, Go: A Family's Journey to Olympic Gold

- Rating: 4.52 (50 ratings)
- Author: Nancy Smirl Jorgensen
- Published: October 18, 2019
- Genres: Memoir, Nonfiction
- Read more on Goodreads
37 / 50
Goodreads

Black House (The Talisman, #2)

- Rating: 4.02 (58,476 ratings)
- Author: Stephen King
- Published: January 1, 2001
- Genres: Horror, Fantasy, Fiction, Thriller
- Read more on Goodreads
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Goodreads

Wingshooters

- Rating: 3.84 (1,714 ratings)
- Author: Nina Revoyr
- Published: February 8, 2011
- Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical, Coming Of Age
- Read more on Goodreads
39 / 50
Goodreads

The Simplicity of Cider

- Rating: 3.72 (4,492 ratings)
- Author: Amy E. Reichert
- Published: May 16, 2017
- Genres: Romance, Fiction, Chick Lit, Contemporary
- Read more on Goodreads
40 / 50
Goodreads

Shotgun Lovesongs

- Rating: 3.79 (16,953 ratings)
- Author: Nickolas Butler
- Published: March 11, 2014
- Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, Adult Fiction, Literary Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads

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Goodreads

The Off Season (Dairy Queen, #2)

- Rating: 3.93 (11,234 ratings)
- Author: Catherine Gilbert Murdock
- Published: May 22, 2007
- Genres: Young Adult, Sports, Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
- Read more on Goodreads
42 / 50
Goodreads

Good Graces

- Rating: 3.91 (1,385 ratings)
- Author: Lesley Kagen
- Published: September 1, 2011
- Genres: Fiction, Mystery, Coming Of Age, Family
- Read more on Goodreads
43 / 50
Goodreads

Heaven's Keep (Cork O'Connor, #9)

- Rating: 4.18 (8,288 ratings)
- Author: William Kent Krueger
- Published: September 1, 2009
- Genres: Mystery, Fiction, Mystery Thriller, Thriller
- Read more on Goodreads
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Goodreads

Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

- Rating: 4.47 (82,885 ratings)
- Author: Matthew Desmond
- Published: March 1, 2016
- Genres: Nonfiction, Sociology, Politics, Social Justice
- Read more on Goodreads
45 / 50
Goodreads

American Dervish

- Rating: 3.71 (8,836 ratings)
- Author: Ayad Akhtar
- Published: October 1, 2012
- Genres: Fiction, Religion, Coming Of Age, Islam
- Read more on Goodreads

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Goodreads

Amina's Voice

- Rating: 3.97 (8,582 ratings)
- Author: Hena Khan
- Published: March 14, 2017
- Genres: Middle Grade, Realistic Fiction, Fiction, Contemporary
- Read more on Goodreads
47 / 50
Goodreads

Limping through Life: A Farm Boy's Polio Memoir

- Rating: 3.91 (140 ratings)
- Author: Jerry Apps
- Published: March 1, 2013
- Genres: Memoir, Nonfiction, Biography, Autobiography
- Read more on Goodreads
48 / 50
Goodreads

Caddie Woodlawn's Family (Caddie Woodlawn, #2)

- Rating: 4.14 (2,033 ratings)
- Author: Carol Ryrie Brink
- Published: January 1, 1939
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Childrens, Fiction, Classics
- Read more on Goodreads
49 / 50
Goodreads

Freedom Train North: Stories of the Underground Railroad in Wisconsin

- Rating: 3.61 (28 ratings)
- Author: Julia Pferdehirt
- Published: September 1, 2011
- Genres: History, Childrens
- Read more on Goodreads
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Goodreads

One Came Home

- Rating: 3.80 (9,568 ratings)
- Author: Amy Timberlake
- Published: January 1, 2013
- Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Young Adult, Middle Grade
- Read more on Goodreads

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