As your car speeds below a lighted window among a thousand just like it in the Bronx, or past one lone home nestled in the hills of rural West Virginia, do you ever peer out and wonder: What would it be like to live here? What do people here think about? What do they do? What are their stories?

Great Americans by KK Ottesen

Great Americans is the product of my journey all across the United States, interviewing and photographing regular people about their lives.  The twist?  All of these individuals happen to share names with our nation's most famous and infamous icons - Marilyn Monroe, Muhammad Ali, Abraham Lincoln.  In revealing black & white photographs and in their own words, these great Americans (one from each state) talk about their lives, their adventures under these famous monikers, and what they think it means to be an American.  What emerges is a fascinating composite portrait of the country at a moment in time.


"A stroke of genius... Funny, touching, reassuring, highly individual and inspiring."

- Commercial Appeal, Memphis, TN

"Sometimes inspiring, sometimes sad, but always true to the heart of the heartland."

- New Orleans Times-Picayune


"The season's treasure... a charming, addictive book."

- New York Observer