As a natural listener and a therapist, Milana Marsenich has witnessed amazing generosity and courage in others. She first witnessed this in her hometown of Butte, Montana, a mining town with a rich history and the setting for Copper Sky, her first novel.
Copper Sky was chosen as a Spur Award finalist for Best Western Historical Novel. She has an M.Ed. in Mental Health Counseling from Montana State University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Montana.
Six months after my mother died, my 73-year-old father pulled his kayak out of the Colorado River and his heart stopped. It stopped only for a few seconds and then started again. My brother took him back to his house in Glenwood Springs and my father insisted on driving home to Butte, Montana.
I thought Pearl would die three months ago. My boss first found her outside of a local bar when she was about 3 inches long, with her eyes still sealed shut and walking into rocks. She brought her home and then to work. I saw the furry little, tuft eared, kitty and agreed to foster her until we could find a good home for her.
I walked into our small house and Mama, Papa and Marko all focused on me. It was strange. The girl is not usually the center of attention. I sat down, and waited for the news. Papa’s sickness? My grandmother’s death? Or did Marko join the army? We had just entered the war. But not everyone was happy about it. People said they’d be killing their own brothers, people like us, who’d just crossed the Atlantic to America.