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Talking with Kase Johnstun about his new novel 'Cast Away' on Tuesday's Access Utah

What would you do for your shot at the American Dream? Veronica Chavez and her great nephew Chuy immigrate from Mexico to the US, their journeys seventy years apart, each willing to do whatever it takes to build the life of their dreams. In 1922, Veronica’s romantic expectations are crushed by the dangers of living alone in a foreign country. Young and determined, she finds community in Utah’s desert railroad towns. Decades later, Chuy comes with his family to Salt Lake City, but his parents are soon sent back to Mexico. Out of place but together, Chuy and Veronica manage to connect across generations—hatching a plan to finally win it big on reality TV.
Kase Johnstun lives and writes in Ogden, Utah. He is the manager for the Utah Center for the Book and Utah’s Affiliate to the Library of Congress. Along with his forthcoming novel Cast Away, he is the author of the award-winning novel Let the Wild Grasses Grow and the award-winning memoir Beyond the Grip of Craniosynostosis. He holds an MA in Creative Writing and Literature from Kansas State University and an MFA in Creative Writing from Pacific University. You can find him running on the trails of the Rocky Mountains along the face of the Wasatch Front.

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Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996. He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.) He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah.” He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.