Oaf in ...

The Oaf was created on fine day when my wife and I were hiking a trail that paralleled a small stream in the Lake Tahoe area. A couple hours into the day, we both commented on seeing something to our side, just inside our peripheral view. We played with the idea that Native America spirits remained in these woods as positive guides. Later, I noticed a large lizard on the trail ahead, and my heart thumped at the enormous size. As I approached, it became clear it was a thick branch that grew down, then sideways, and back up again. The idea that imagination can spark life into something as simple as a limb intrigued the idea of the story. The rest of the day we both still noticed spirits, but I also became acutely aware of the many knots in the large trees. By the end of the hike, the Oaf was born and being written in my mind.

The Oaf will magically charm your middle-grade child into a precious and endearing relationship with the Oaf who is the guardian of the woods and all of nature. Life isn't always what it appears, like the Oaf's true relationship with the other characters, and how magic can happen for everyone with a loving heart. Each Oaf adventure brings new awareness that inspires positive action.

Oaf in Ophir by Daniel G Linsteadt

Oaf in Ophir

A highlight of every summer for Emory and his little sister Faye was their special annual visit to their grandmother. At Baba’s house, the kids played by the streams, ate blackberries, watched deer, and ran through the woods to their heart’s desire. This summer, Emory was particularly intrigued by the rumor of a magical Oaf living near Baba after discovering his dad’s Ophir newspaper clippings.

Emory was alert as he explored the streams and wandered through the woods. A flash of light up the hillside began the magical summer he hoped for. A voice floated through the air, the sound of wood twisting in the trees, and a glimpse of a ragged piece of cloth were the first hints of the Oaf. Baba was delighted by Emory’s adventures and urged him to offer a sandwich along with a note to the mysterious being who was revealing itself for Emory.

The Oaf revealed his magic with nature after Emory was mysteriously protected from a mountain lion attack. Baba finally shared her encounters with the irresistible Oaf and his ways in the woods. Tantalizing encounters ensued when Faye arrived and the Oaf slowly befriended the children. The Oaf helped them discover their own personal relationship with nature and their own innate gifts of magic with the plants, trees, and wildlife.

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You may also purchase the book (softback, hardback, and E-book) at these fine locations:

Without lecturing or moralizing, Linsteadt quietly lets the reader in on the history of the Oaf, his reasons for living outdoors, and his efforts to preserve and protect the countryside and the plants and animals living there.
Those of us who are lucky enough to live in this extraordinary place should read this book and share its message with children so they, too, will appreciate and defend it, and perhaps, one day, become a special knot on a special tree. —Reene Abbott, for the Auburn Journal
The elusive Oaf sparks the imagination, leaving the reader wishing for more! Captivating from beginning to end, Linsteadt weaves an enchanting lyrical tale of a family’s search for innocence and wisdom through their connection to nature. —Paula Peach, Teacher/Artist/Musician
The Oaf in Ophir rekindles the spirit of the forest for young and old to explore, trust, play and come back to time and time again. This children's story will prompt any age to grab a friend and go explore their surrounding ecosystem, one creek at a time. —Aimee Retzler, Sierra Harvest Co-Director
With the magic that comes from being in tune with nature, this book sends all the messages I want my daughter to hear and take to heart. A thoroughly enjoyable read! —Corinne Lowell-Meigs, Teacher
Oh, to be a child discovering the magic of the woods and streams with the Oaf! I imagine anyone who reads this book will feel exactly that way. —John Bowman, Writer/Poet
Oaf in Bear River by Daniel G Linsteadt

Oaf in Bear River

The second Oaf adventure begins with Emory and Faye returning to Baba's house days before school starts. Sorely missing their magical time with the Oaf, Baba takes them on a camping trip along the Bear River in hopes of lifting their spirits. The Oaf appears and another thrilling adventure of discovery ensues for them all.

Faye meets a dragonfly named Lokni on a log in the middle of the river, and they instantly become friends. With the Oaf's help, Faye assists Lokni's dragonfly cluster to escape the swarms of yellow jackets encroaching on their river home. Emory befriends a bear cub named Takoda, who wandered off and became separated from his mother and sister. Instead of searching for his family, Emory and Takoda delight in eating and playing until the Oaf provides a little nudge.

The Oaf juggles both Emory's and Faye's quest to experience challenges from another creature's eyes. Avoiding the reporter Mr. Zolo and his journalistic pursuit to reveal the Oaf's identity and magic, Baba is forced to lend a hand. Will Mr. Zolo outsmart the Oaf before Baba, Emory, and Faye can come to his aide?

Buy an author signed copy (softback $10, hardback $20):

You may also purchase the book (softback, hardback, and E-book) at these fine locations:

This book brings a positive message on the importance and interconnectedness of the natural world to children. —Leila Barber, Curriculum Specialist, Yuba River Charter School
Linsteadt brings you into a magical world of nature and imagination, helping us to appreciate and reconnect with animals and family. A refreshing and delightful read! —Mary S. Gonzales, Teacher-Librarian, Dolores Gonzales Elementary
This is exactly the kind of book I searched out as a child. It offers a sense of the magic of nature, the possibility of kind, benevolent beings who watched over me, and a sense of acknowledgment for the dignity of children. Plus, it's a fun and joyful read! I'm collecting Dan's books for my nephews. —Susan Whitaker, Owner/Teacher, Canyon Spirit Yoga Center
Oaf in Kindship by Daniel G Linsteadt

Oaf in Kindship

The story is in final edits.

The third Oaf tale takes you into the past where you discover the how and why a husband, father, and grandfather became the Oaf.



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