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the highway of spirit and bone

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Complex family dynamics and a long road trip lie at the center of The Highway of Spirit and Bone, the debut novel from poet and former professor Steven Ostrowski.


The journey begins when husband and father David Stepenski reluctantly agrees to drive his mother, Lilly, from her longtime home on Staten Island to Flagstaff, Arizona. Though uneasy over a new neighbor’s interest in his wife, he leaves his family behind.


His sister Jeanette joins them, though she and David cannot reconcile their antagonistic past. Jeanette has recently broken off a relationship with her former lover, Sherry, who also takes to the road, desperate for a different reconciliation.


Finally, their poet brother Aaron awaits in Las Vegas with family secrets and unresolved issues, necessitating a detour.


Along the highways of America, David, Lilly, and Jeanette encounter people and situations that are sometimes humorous, sometimes poignant, and occasionally dangerous. Each provides insights into the most complex of relationships and challenges of the journeying soul.

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