Migration Patterns

“This beautifully drawn collection of stories features characters living in or touched by the American West. Young and old, with heartbreaking pasts and uncertain futures, they cope with migration in all of its nuances—a young crab fisherman who exiles himself from the life he desires; an aging flower child who experiences enlightenment while waiting in the express checkout line; a veterinarian watching birds fall mysteriously from the sky; an old man seeing his life come full circle in the garden harvest.  Spare, yet emotionally engaging, Migration Patterns is an exploration of the physical and spiritual aspects of moving on in life.”

“Schanbacher’s unflinching prose is also lyrical.  With the accuracy of a laser, it lays bare the deepest emotions of the human heart.”

—Rocky Mountain News

“Schanbacher writes beautifully, but not in a showy way.  He builds up characters and landscapes through simple, precise detail.”


“Introspective and soul-searching, but not self-indulgent, the selections feel timeless.”

—School Library Journal

Awards for Migration Patterns:

2008 Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award Honorable Mention

Colorado Book Award, Fiction

High Plains First Book Award

Eric Hoffer Book Award, General Fiction

Independent Publisher Book Awards, Bronze Medal