Books by Rae Ellen Lee

A FIELD GUIDE TO GEEZERS

After 28 years of research, Rae Ellen has finally analyzed her findings and completed her affectionate and humorous booklet, A FIELD GUIDE TO GEEZERS — An Illustrated Look at a Curious Branch of Hominids. Brilliant and Talented cartoonist, John Alley, has illustrated her findings with flair, depicting contemporary geezers in action in order to help you identify the various members of this charming species. You will learn to recognize a geezer up to a mile away, including Western Riverside and Lakeshore Geezers, Farmer and Cowboy Geezers, Metro Geezers, North Woods Geezers of the Upper Midwest, Boating Geezers, White-Rumped Geezers, Gearhead and Techno Geezers, and lest we forget — Geezer Girls. Field Notes provide scientific names and describe their unique behaviors and habits, where you’re likely to sight them, and the noises they make in the morning. Read authentic geezer stories, discover year-round viewing techniques, and learn to live-trap one for your very own. Learn “The Rules.”

NEW:  Now includes authentic geezer tales told by Post Hole Augerson in Powder Monkey Tales.

For the latest geezer adventures, check out the Geezer guide blog.

Now Also Available: Geezer Note Cards

“Brings to life the characters who add spice to our ordinary lives!” –Penny Bews, geezer enthusiast, Priest River, ID

“In the sections on viewing and live-trapping a geezer of your own, Lee gives great tips on deciding the type of geezer who might interest you, the places to do a little scouting, and ideas to help you trap and keep your catch.” –Mary Perkins, avid reader, Olympia, WA

“… families will laugh while clustered around its pages, trying to identify which classifications their beloved geezers belong to.” —Pam Beason, Mystery and Romance Author

“We love your geezer guide. It’s very well done with so many wonderful illustrations, and so funny. You have a wondrous sense of humor and a great imagination.” –Martin Drivdahl, Helena, MT

WATCH A FUN VIDEO of RAE ELLEN RIFFING ON GEEZERS:


CHEATING THE HOG
A Sawmill. A Tragedy. 
A Few Gutsy Women. 

is inspired by a true story.

Echo needs a miracle. She’s turning fifty, lives with her gun-toting mom, and her lover’s been killed in a logging truck accident. She made front-page news as a Salvation Army bell ringer, but that job ended and she’s digging for change to pay off a gambling debt.

The local sawmill hires her to do cleanup and odd jobs, like ‘cheating the hog’. And now, with high pay and benefits in sight, Echo expects to be farting in silk. But on the first day at the mill, she realizes this job could kill her. Can she survive hanging from a narrow ramp twenty feet in the air while untangling cedar bark? Will a forklift driver named Bullfrog run her down before she gets her first paycheck?

When tragedy does strike, she leads the other women mill workers to fight back with a few leveraged threats and wit as sharp as band saw teeth—earning her respect on the job and the attention of a strong-hearted man.

“. . .Showing up for work is what most people do. But in the face of dangerous odds, Echo puts on her big girl panties and her hard hat and proceeds to clean house. We admire her grit, her humor, and her inner compass that points to doing the right thing. I love this book. Truly a page turner.”
Sherry Gohr, avid reader and fan.


In My Next Husband Will Be Normal—A St. John Adventure, Lee and her husband ditch their sailboat and fly to the U.S. Virgin Islands with a down payment for a mom and pop business on St. John. The plan: when they aren’t sewing canvas bags at their little shop, The Canvas Factory, they’ll be beach potatoes. But there are risks to living in paradise one cannot anticipate. For soon after unpacking their flip-flops, the husband—a former Republican state legislator with a silver crew-cut and solid traditional values—realizes he is really a she. Convinced the world needs more humor, Lee rations the angst in favor of the picturesque and absurd. Adding heat to the story is a cast of colorful cats, customers, and Caribbean personalities. Toss in a few sex toys, some steel pan music, a pinch of voodoo—and stir.
Blue Ribbon for MNH

Thank you Chanticleer Book Reviews for the blue ribbon in the Travelogue/Experience category.

“I laughed! I cried! What a ride! What a story!”
— Kathryn Hamshar, Idaho Writers’ League, 3-time Poet of the Year

“… offers incredible memories, amazing insights, and an expanded vision of what we, as personalities in bodies, are actually all about.”
— Jan Willing, author and illustrator of A Peace of Sloths; and Li’l Books: Hiram, Margaretta, Pip, Grace and Earl, and Gibson Gaylord

“Adventurous readers will relish Lee’s outrageous revelations.” — Maura Curley, publisher, VirginVoices.com and author of Duck in a Raincoat

Maura Curley speaks with author Rae Ellen Lee about her memoir set on St. John. Read the review and listen to an interview Feb. 22, 2012, with the publisher of VirginVoices.com (a Caribbean online newspaper).


I Only Cuss When I’m Sailing (first published in print as If The Shoe Fits by Sheridan House) is a memoir about Rae Ellen’s move with husband, Tom, from the mountains of Montana to a sailboat on the West Coast. They would learn to sail, fix up the old boat, and sail it to the Caribbean. But things don’t go as planned. The book is about taking risks and making changes, told with a candid and humorous perspective. The humor in this memoir cured two cases of depression, made a book group laugh and cry, and caused one audience member at a rest home to laugh so hysterically she lost her teeth.

“Rae Ellen Lee’s If The Shoe Fits is pure delight. With clarity, insight, straightforward storytelling and remarkable humor, Rae Ellen brings the reader aboard and down below into the dream and reality of preparing for the cruising lifestyle. Rae Ellen has the gift to make me laugh out loud while speaking from the heart of life’s risks and rewards.”
— Carol Hasse, sailmaker and contributor to Cruising World Magazine

“If you dream of quitting your job to do Something Else, this book is for you. It is an honest account of how a woman of a certain age re-invented her life to become one half of a married couple — then found out it meant living on a sailboat. Her story is guided by love and sustained by humor. This is a warm, human, and very funny book.”
— Linda Ridihalgh, editor Living Aboard




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Read Excerpt

Rae Ellen describes The Bluebird House as a paranormal-historical-romance-adventure novel with a mystery and some mountain man recipes. This tale of a haunted brothel (one Rae Ellen lived in and renovated) was a readers’ choice selection of the Salt Lake City public library system.

The place:  Montana. The time:  the present.  After a nearly fatal encounter with a moose and a terrifyingly close brush with middle age, Molly reassesses her life. The result:  she ends her stale marriage and moves to a small mining town where she purchases The Bluebird House, an old bordello. She hires Ben, a handsome carpenter–and poet, gourmet cook, and mountain man–to help her renovate the old building. Molly can’t help but be attracted to the younger man–until she discovers that he was once tried and acquitted of a gruesome murder. Shocked, she tries to uncover the truth behind the murder and Ben’s part in it. Meanwhile, intrigued by her new home, Molly also tracks down the true story of her predecessor–the madam of The Bluebird House.

“… Pulls the reader into the wide open spaces of Molly’s life as she sets out to create a ‘deep well of memories to drink from’. I couldn’t wait to see what Molly would discover when she decided to step outside her old, safe image of herself and her life. You have to find out what’s going to happen to a character that can say, ‘At least this year a moose stepped on me’.”
— Tess Pendergrass, author of the Colorado Trilogy

“Wow, what a beautiful book! Rae Ellen Lee is an artist, painting the scenery of her story with poignant brush strokes. She writes about life with wit and humor. For every woman who has ever felt frustrated and alone — and haven’t we all? — and for every man who doesn’t understand women — and do any of them? — I highly recommend this book.”
— Marthayn Pelegrimas, author of On the Strength of Wings


Powder Monkey Tales — A Portrait in Stories captures the history and humor of Wesley Moore, alias Post Hole Augerson, a geezer of some renown. A farm boy from Illinois turned woods worker in northern Idaho, Wes used dynamite to help build logging roads for Diamond (through three company name changes.) A man who did this work was called a “powder monkey.” Rae Ellen tape-recorded her father telling about his childhood pet skunks; about what happened the day he ate green grapes all the way to school; how he “jerked” five tons of sweet corn by noon; and shared anecdotes about life at Camp 9 near Priest Lake.

“This is a book of vignettes. Powder Monkey Tales is a verbal picture book with those faded old black and white photos; You know, the ones with edges that looked like they’d been trimmed with Mom’s pinking shears. You can read it slowly or read it fast… either way you’ll get a chuckle and a heaping spoonful of nostalgia for the “old days.” Lonnie Dee Robinson.

NEWS:  Many of these authentic geezer stories are now included in A FIELD GUIDE TO GEEZERS.

The following story, The Osprey and the Fishing License, was performed in 1989 at the Idaho Centennial Play, Idaho Tales, Tall and True.

“One day I went down across the road here, perch fishing in the Pend O’Reille. I fished for a while and caught a few. Just down the river on the bank sat an osprey. One wing was hanging down. Looked like he was pretty weak. Must a flew into the telephone line or something, hurt himself. So I took a couple fish down there, close as I could get. I tossed him one. He ate it. I tossed him another. He ate that one, too. I went back to where I was fishing, and he follered me. I gave him another fish when he got there. Oh, I fished a while longer and headed home. And he follered me again. When I got home it was starting to get a little dark. ’Bout time to go to roost anyway, so I took the osprey out to the shed and set him on the back of an old chair.

Went out in the morning, took him some more fish and a pan of water for a drink. He hung around here for a few days. I kept feeding him. Finally he got so he could fly. He’d fly around a little, and finally got used to flying again. Two or three days went by and he finally took off.

After that, about every few days he’d bring me some fish. Dropped ’em off on the porch. Kept that up. Brought me a mess of fish every two or three days. One day the game warden caught him at it and said, “Wes, you’re gonna have to buy that osprey a fishing license.”