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Michael McEwen Randall's Publications


This is Mike Randall's publications web site. On the following pages you can learn a bit about Mike's background, see a summary of his recently published book, BECOMING HUMAN: A SERVANT OF THE MAP, read an excerpt, check out readers' comments, and find where the book can be purchased.








BECOMING HUMAN is a collection of more than fifty essays and profiles of people, and deals with what it means to change one’s life, to become more human. These stories exemplify the challenges and glories of living in a world both beautiful and savage, where every living thing must destroy other life to be able to live.

Many of the book’s stories are about South Dakotans. Mike writes about a group of Dakota (Sioux) grandmothers who are trying to save their young people from America’s "dominant society." He tells of his Lakota (Sioux) inmate friend who has found redemption and peace of mind in South Dakota State Penitentiary, though he faces a life sentence without parole. Mike turns the discovery of an ancient (Clovis) spear point lost 11,000 years ago by mammoth hunters on the James River lowland into a brief history of the world. He describes how he learned shame from a disabled man, and discovers the great 1918 influenza's impact on one young family.

Some stories in Becoming Human take place outside of South Dakota, and relate to Mike’s own journey toward becoming more human. They deal with his past work as a police officer in his home town, Portland, Oregon. They chronicle his long ago journeys in Asia on tramp steamers after his discharge from the Marines. He writes of things as different as his role of caregiver to his brother who died of a brain tumor in late 2006, and of his recent night shift ride with a young cop in Key West, Florida.

In three stories, Mike roams the Arizona-Mexico border and vividly portrays its present violence and disruptions. Interviewing undocumented migrants, he describes their struggles and traces the life of one such man found dead in a desert ravine by American Samaritans. 

Roaming the beautiful regions around the Columbia River's mouth, he tells of shipwreck tragedies and the mysteries of people gone missing in this storm-drenched place…his native ground.


Consider reading an excerpt from BECOMING HUMAN...>>>>

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