Since announcing the upcoming release of a new edition on Friday, the Facebook page for the book Tales of Coles County, Illinois has gone viral, garnering over 900 new likes in five days. That is an average of 180 new likes per day. The first in a series of antique ‘postcards’ promoting the book, uploaded on Monday, has been shared 175 times and viewed by nearly 9,000 people.
First released in 2004, Tales of Coles County, Illinois by Michael Kleen follows the journey of four students from Eastern Illinois University who are stranded in an old cabin during a storm. The elderly couple who live there tell the students four stories, each related to Coles County history: a battle with Indians near Blakeman’s Mill, the Charleston Riot, the Coles County Poor Farm, and the body found at Airtight Bridge. After one night, these students will never look at Coles County the same way.
The 10th Anniversary Edition of Tales of Coles County will also feature a section on the legends and lore of Coles County. With everything from haunted houses, to the Mad Gasser of Mattoon, ghost towns, and buried treasure, this book will leave no stone unturned. The new edition will include four new places not appearing in any previous edition, as well as nearly a dozen photos.
Michael Kleen lived in Coles County from 2000 to 2008 and received his BA in philosophy and MA in history from Eastern Illinois University. He currently lives in Rockford, Illinois where he owns an independent publishing company, Black Oak Media, Inc. He has written several books, including Haunting Illinois: A Tour Guide to the Weird and Wild Places of the Prairie State.
The 10th Anniversary Edition of Tales of Coles County will be released in August 2013. Until then, updates and events will be posted at its Facebook page: www.facebook.com/ColesCountyTales