Kathy-jo Wargin

The Official Website of Bestselling Author



Welcome to my website and my books, I'm so happy that you're here. I’m thrilled to introduce my first adult novel, The Stonegarden, which is from my new Orchard Bay Series. If you’re a longtime reader of mine, or whether you've enjoyed my books for children or coffee table books for adults, thank you for exploring something new from me. I hope you'll stay in touch!  - Kathy-jo



Upcoming Release!

The Stonegarden

She was starting over. He was at the end. She was settling into a town she'd known long ago, where her only hope for a new start was through the door of a shabby cottage in need of a second chance. He was building a secret out of stones, heavy stones plucked from the land and placed neatly into the deep chambers of a long-held sorrow. Amidst the shore of Lake Michigan, blue-white days and star-filled nights give way to an uplifting story and an introduction to some of Orchard Bay's central characters.


The Orchard Bay Series takes place in beautiful Door County, Wisconsin, along the shore of Lake Michigan. I hope you'll join me in this new adventure I'm calling "Northern Women's Fiction."

And in the end, her words fell like snowflakes on a windless night. Soft, light; without haste or weight they collected into one form. In the morning the ground was covered by them all, so quietly birthed and perfect in their completeness, unflinching and cold and still, like her.
— From The Stonegarden by Kathy-jo Wargin

books for adults

Welcome to Orchard Bay, the newest series by Kathy-jo Wargin.

We'll see you in Door County. 



About The Orchard Bay Series

I am excited to introduce my upcoming series set in the fictional town of Orchard Bay, Wisconsin, a charming harbor village nestled upon the shore of the Door Peninsula, overlooking Lake Michigan. 

When the time arrived to put these stories to paper, my mind's eye knew the characters had to live in and be entwined with the Great Lakes. The landscape of Door County sprang to mind, and it just fit.  I've lived in such places too, and as the old saying goes, write what you know. Spending time with these characters and their lives, I quickly learned that their stories were organically woven into the peninsula, authentically hemmed into our Great Lakes lifestyle.

It's really no surprise the Great Lakes would figure prominently in this first series. Most of my career has been focused on writing about the Great Lakes region and I too genuinely appreciate living the freshwater life. As a writer, I enjoy writing about the places I know and love best. 

Orchard Bay is a small town where second chances and new beginnings flow easily for some,  but not for all. I hope you'll come along with me  and  I promise we'll have some fun while we can. I mean, why wouldn't it be fun? We'll be in Door County, after all.     


Kathy-jo Wargin 

books for children


From the beloved classics that warmed your heart or brought a tear to your eye, to the silly animal antics of today and forthcoming titles coming soon.



As an author for children,

Kathy-jo Wargin has written more than 50 books and earned numerous awards and citations for writing compelling, historically accurate and enriching stories. She has also earned a sterling reputation as a public speaker, educator,  and Great Lakes advocate. She is the author of The Legend of Sleeping Bear, which is Michigan's Official State Children's Book, International Reading Association Award Winner The Legend of the Loon, and many more. 


Children's Choice Awards • International Reading Association Teacher's Choice Award • Parenting Publication Awards • Midwest Booksellers Association Awards • Great Lakes Bookseller Association Awards • Amazon Bestselling Category Award • Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards • Minnesota Book Award Finalist • New York State Reading Association Awards • Bank Street College Best Books Award Lists • Read Michigan Selection Awards •Michigan Notable Book Awards • International Reading Association Children's Choice Awards • Children's Crown Gallery Awards • Alabama Camellia Awards Children's Choice • Cooperative Children's Book Center Awards • Rutgers University Book of the Month Awards • Michigan Reading Association Awards • Storytelling Awards • National Book Festivals State Selection Award