‘MOONSHINE MONARCHY’: Local Author Explores Micro-Nations in New Novel
Adam Oster’s newest novel takes place in northern Wisconsin
Most folks have had the thought of breaking away from society and completely starting over in the middle of nowhere run through their mind. Author and owner of The Nostalgic Bean (1403 Lynn Ave., Altoona), Adam Oster, recently released a novel following a similar idea, titled Moonshine Monarchy.
Moonshine Monarchy follows a 73-year-old man named Jim Monroe who decides to escape into the Wisconsin Northwoods, leaving letters to prominent political figures declaring he is separating from the United States and creating his own nation called “Monrovia.” When the IRS targets him, Jim’s rebellion turns into something much bigger as others decide to join him on his land, and a looming threat of war with the U.S. threatens everything.
Oster began writing Moonshine Monarchy about seven years ago, the journey taking him on a long winding road that led to robust research on micro-nations, which are very real within the U.S. Most notably, there is a micro-nation in Milwaukee called Talossa, which mostly exists online.
“The best part was just exploring this idea,” Oster said. “I had a very simple idea of what would happen in that event. When I started I was like, “Oh, it’ll be mass war and people coming in with tanks and shooting stuff,” but as you start thinking about it, that’s not as likely. I think the fun part was just getting to explore that and trying to do the research to figure out if there were any precedents for this type of thing to see what might happen and how it might happen.”
This is Oster’s eighth book but the first in the folklore genre, most of his previous novels being action and adventure-type books. Moonshine Monarchy was released on June 16 and while he didn’t have a book release event, Oster celebrated by going out to the Northwoods with his wife, fishing, much like Jim Monroe would in the novel.
Oster is originally from South Carolina and has many impressive projects in his portfolio including books and plays, all of which can be viewed and purchased through links on his website.