In which Southern girls prefer pick-up trucks, Mr. Wayne Flynt finds Alabama tomatoes to be superior, Samuel Beckett thinks the forward to William Faulkner's Mosquitoes would have a regrettable effect on an ostrich, Ms. Mary Alice Monroe exhorts people to save the butterflies, Mr. Ron Rash finds an abandoned still, and Ms. Katherine Stockett doesn't take a bath.
Authors Round the South www.authorsroundthesouth.com
Have you ever picked up a book and found it to be so extraordinarily good that you were almost afraid to pick up another, as it was sure to disappoint in comparison. Her ladyship experienced this feeling upon finishing Mr. Daniel Woodrell's The Outlaw Album: Stories, a book that was utterly surprising in its intensity and utterly captivating in its beautiful language.
Fortunately, her ladyship lives in the South, so there is no need to fear for her next book. Wonderful writing is as common here as Spanish moss in the trees and kudzu along the highways. She is now reading Charles Frazier's Nightwoods.
Happy, happy reading!
her ladyship, the editor
Southern Indie Bestsellers
For the week ending Sunday, October 16, 2011
Columbia, SC - October 24, 2011 - The Southern Indie Bestseller List, as brought to you by IndieBound.org and SIBA, for the week ended Sunday, October 16, 2011. Based on reporting from the independent booksellers of the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance and IndieBound.org.
1. The Best of Me Nicholas Sparks, Grand Central, $25.99, 9780446547659 2. The Marriage Plot Jeffrey Eugenides, FSG, $28, 9780374203054 3. The Night Circus Erin Morgenstern, Doubleday, $26.95, 9780385534635 4. The Affair Lee Child, Delacorte, $28, 9780385344326 5. Nightwoods Charles Frazier, Random House, $26, 9781400067091 6. The Paris Wife Paula McLain, Ballantine, $25, 9780345521309 7. The Art of Fielding Chad Harbach, Little Brown, $25.99, 9780316126694 8. Rules of Civility Amor Towles, Viking, $26.95, 9780670022694 9. State of Wonder Ann Patchett, Harper, $26.99, 9780062049803 10. The Dovekeepers Alice Hoffman, Scribner, $27.99, 9781451617474 11. When She Woke Hillary Jordan, Algonquin, $24.95, 9781565126299 12. The Cat's Table Michael Ondaatje, Knopf, $26, 9780307700117 13. Feast Day of Fools James Lee Burke, S&S, $26.99, 9781451643114 14. Caleb's Crossing Geraldine Brooks, Viking, $26.95, 9780670021048 15. Aleph Paulo Coelho, Knopf, $24.95, 9780307700186
1. Unbroken Laura Hillenbrand, Random House, $27, 9781400064168 2. Killing Lincoln Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard, Holt, $28, 9780805093070 3. Boomerang Michael Lewis, Norton, $25.95, 9780393081817 4. In the Garden of Beasts Erik Larson, Crown, $26, 9780307408846 5. Paula Deen's Southern Cooking Bible Paula Deen, S&S, $29.99, 9781416564072 6. Jacqueline Kennedy Caroline Kennedy, Michael Beschloss, Hyperion, $60, 9781401324254 7. Destiny of the Republic Candice Millard, Doubleday, $28.95, 9780385526265 8. Go the F**k to Sleep Adam Mansbach, Ricardo Cortes (Illus.), Akashic, $14.95, 9781617750250 9. That Used to Be Us Thomas L. Friedman, Michael Mandelbaum, FSG, $28, 9780374288907 10. Hemingway's Boat Paul Hendrickson, Knopf, $30, 9781400041626 11. Seriously... I'm Kidding Ellen DeGeneres, Grand Central, $26.99, 9780446585026 12. Lions of the West Robert Morgan, Shannon Ravenel Books, $29.95, 9781565126268 13. The Happy Table of Eugene Walter Donald Goodman (Ed.), University of North Carolina Press, $30, 9780807834831 14. The Swerve Stephen Greenblatt, Norton, $26.95, 9780393064476 15. Confidence Men Ron Suskind, Harper, $29.99, 9780061429255
Trade Paperback Fiction
1. The Help Kathryn Stockett, Berkley, $16, 9780425245132 2. Cutting for Stone Abraham Verghese, Vintage, $15.95, 9780375714368 3. Sarah's Key Tatiana De Rosnay, St. Martin's Griffin, $13.99, 9781250004345 4. Freedom Jonathan Franzen, Picador, $16, 9780312576462 5. Room Emma Donoghue, Back Bay, $14.99, 9780316098328 6. A Visit From the Goon Squad Jennifer Egan, Anchor, $14.95, 9780307477477 7. The Art of Racing in the Rain Garth Stein, Harper, $14.99, 9780061537967 8. Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk David Sedaris, Ian Falconer (Illus.), Back Bay, $13.99, 9780316038409 9. Started Early, Took My Dog Kate Atkinson, Reagan Arthur Books, $14.99, 9780316066747 10. The Postmistress Sarah Blake, Berkley, $15, 9780425238691 11. Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter Tom Franklin, Harper Perennial, $14.99, 9780060594671 12. Whistlin' Dixie in a Nor'easter Lisa Patton, St. Martin's Griffin, $13.99, 9780312658892 13. Major Pettigrew's Last Stand Helen Simonson, Random House, $15, 9780812981223 14. Little Bee Chris Cleave, S&S, $15, 9781416589648 15. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Stieg Larsson, Vintage, $14.95, 9780307454546
Trade Paperback Nonfiction
1. Heaven Is for Real Todd Burpo, Thomas Nelson, $16.99, 9780849946158 2. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Rebecca Skloot, Broadway, $16, 9781400052189 3. Unlikely Friendships Jennifer S. Holland, Workman, $13.95, 9780761159131 4. Cleopatra Stacy Schiff, Back Bay, $16.99, 9780316001946 5. The Emperor of All Maladies Siddhartha Mukherjee, Scribner, $18, 9781439170915 6. Moneyball Michael Lewis, Norton, $15.95, 9780393338393 7. In the Sanctuary of Outcasts Neil White, Harper Perennial, $14.99, 9780061351631 8. Empire of the Summer Moon S.C. Gwynne, Scribner, $16, 9781416591061 9. Born to Run Christopher McDougall, Vintage, $15.95, 9780307279187 10. At Home Bill Bryson, Anchor, $15.95, 9780767919395 11. The Fall of the House of Zeus Curtis Wilkie, Broadway, $16, 9780307460714 12. The Warmth of Other Suns Isabel Wilkerson, Vintage, $16.95, 9780679763888 13. Outliers Malcolm Gladwell, Back Bay, $16.99, 9780316017930 14. The Old Farmer's Almanac 2012 Old Farmer's Almanac, $6.95, 9781571985446 15. The Devil in the White City Erik Larson, Vintage, $15.95, 9780375725609
1. To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee, Warner, $7.99, 9780446310789 2. A Game of Thrones George R.R. Martin, Bantam, $8.99, 9780553593716 3. A Clash of Kings George R.R. Martin, Bantam, $8.99, 9780553579901 4. A Storm of Swords George R.R. Martin, Bantam, $8.99, 9780553573428 5. A Feast for Crows George R.R. Martin, Bantam, $8.99, 9780553582024 6. 1984 George Orwell, Signet, $9.99, 9780451524935 7. Animal Farm George Orwell, Signet, $9.99, 9780451526342 8. Worth Dying For Lee Child, Dell, $9.99, 9780440246299 9. Port Mortuary Patricia Cornwell, Berkley, $9.99, 9780425243602 10. Hell's Corner David Baldacci, Vision, $9.99, 9780446571418
1. If You Give a Dog a Donut Laura Joffe Numeroff, Felicia Bond (Illus.), Balzer & Bray, $16.99, 9780060266837 2. Goodnight Moon Margaret Wise Brown, Clement Hurd (Illus.), Harper, $8.99, 9780694003617 3. The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse Eric Carle, Philomel, $17.99, 9780399257131 4. Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes Eric Litwin, James Dean (Illus.), Harper, $16.99, 9780061906220 5. Llama Llama Home with Mama Anna Dewdney, Viking, $17.99, 9780670012329 6. The Wizard of Oz: A Scanimation Book Rufus Butler Seder (Illus.), Workman, $14.95, 9780761163732 7. Pete the Cat: Rocking in my School Shoes Eric Litwin, James Dean (Illus.), Harper, $16.99, 9780061910241 8. Love You Forever Robert Munsch, Sheila McGraw (Illus.), Firefly, $5.95, 9780920668375 9. The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eric Carle, Putnam, $10.99, 9780399226908 10. Llama Llama Red Pajama Anna Dewdney, Viking, $17.99, 9780670059836
1. Every Thing On It Shel Silverstein, Harper, $19.99, 9780061998164 2. Wonderstruck Brian Selznick, Scholastic, $29.99, 9780545027892 3. Darth Paper Strikes Back Tom Angleberger, Amulet, $12.95, 9781419700279 4. The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories Dr.Seuss, Random House, $15, 9780375864353 5. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children Ransom Riggs, Quirk, $17.99, 9781594744761 6. The Book Thief Markus Zusak, Knopf, $12.99, 9780375842207 7. The Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book Jeff Kinney, Amulet, $12.95, 9780810989955 8. Charlotte's Web E.B. White, Harper, $7.99, 9780061120268 9. Matched Ally Condie, Speak, $9.99, 9780142419779 10. Wildwood Colin Meloy, Carson Ellis (Illus.), Balzer & Bray/HarperTeen, $17.99, 9780062024688
Children's Fiction Series Titles
1. The Son of Neptune (The Heroes of Olympus, Book Two) Rick Riordan, Hyperion, $19.99, 9781423140597 2. The Hunger Games Suzanne Collins, Scholastic, $8.99, 9780439023528 3. Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2) Suzanne Collins, Scholastic, $17.99, 9780439023498 4. Mockingjay (The Final Book of the Hunger Games) Suzanne Collins, Scholastic, $17.99, 9780439023511 5. The Death Cure (The Maze Runner, Book 3) James Dashner, Delacorte, $17.99, 9780385738774 6. Diary of a Wimpy Kid Jeff Kinney, Amulet, $13.95, 9780810993136 7. The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, Book One) Rick Riordan, Hyperion, $18.99, 9781423113393 8. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Last Straw Jeff Kinney, Amulet, $13.95, 9780810970687 9. The Knight at Dawn (The Magic Tree House #2) Mary Pope Osborne, Sal Murdocca (Illus.), Random House, $3.99, 9780679824121 10. Theodore Boone: The Abduction John Grisham, Dutton, $16.99, 9780525425571
Literary News & Gossip passed along from the readers, the writers, the reviewers, the resellers, the riff raff, and dutifully repeated here by her ladyship (who falls into the last category).
" So the book is nearly 30 years old and “Southern Literature” might be said to have already transitioned, dominated now by the likes of Lee Smith, Wendell Berry, Ron Rash, Barry Hannah, Barbara Kingsolver, Natasha Trethewey, Crystal Wilkinson. Still I think the "Gone with the Wind" image of the South lingers on." Southern Gothic
" Meet Iva-Rebel. She’s the newest member of our family. And she arrived in our driveway Sunday, brand spankin’ new, to take this former-girl-in-Honda around." Southern girls in pick-up trucks
" Wayne Flynt may be a champion of the working poor, but he is an elitist when it comes to tomatoes. “It’s just a chauvinistic Southern thing,” said Flynt, the acclaimed Alabama writer, historian and Auburn University professor emeritus. “I prefer to eat Alabama tomatoes.” "The meanest, most hateful thing I've ever read."
" Richard Ford, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and Mississippi native, is heading to New York City. Columbia University announced Tuesday that the author of "Independence Day" is joining its faculty. Stranger in a strange land
" Beyond embodying their characters, actors also need to characterize a community: a living space that stands in the place of a protagonist. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter is, for better and worse, a perfect example of the unique demands required of such an ensemble show." Home isn't where the heart is
" This year two of Williams' works, The Parade and Something Cloudy, Something Clear, were presented on the beach under a tent with one side exposed to the water, the sand as the theater floor, and scaffolding supporting the stage." Tennessee Williams, P-Town Style
" Mosquitoes by William Faulkner: “with a preface by Queneau that would make an ostrich puke”" Beckett's Reading List
"The ground we walk on is a big part of history. I think it's important we relive it and learn as much as we can." Retracing Frederick Douglass
" Rose Post was a 5-foot-tall dynamo with soulful, penetrating eyes — eyes that would never leave the subjects of her interviews, even as she typed or scribbled notes in her pad." Rose Post dies
" By dedicating a small sunny area in our yards and parks for butterfly-friendly plants and flowers and preserving our coastal landscape, we in the Charleston area — an important spot on the coastal migration path — can support the monarch during migrations. Milkweed is available at many local nurseries. This past year I’ve given away 10,000 free milkweed seeds. I’ll offer them again for spring planting. If anyone wants a free packet of milkweed seeds, contact me on my website or Facebook." Save the Butterflies
"When a great leader of the mass movement, Martin Luther King, Jr., emerged, LDF was his lawyer. Through the 1960s, usually in company with local black lawyers, some of whom had been Houston’s students, the LDF defended the movement, student sit-in demonstrators, Freedom Riders and well as movement leaders such as Drs. King, Ralph Abernathy, John Lewis, and Hosea Williams, and won virtually all of the thousands of cases it tried." We worked with Martin
"Civilization begins with distillation,” William Faulkner wrote, and in Oxford, Miss., his adopted hometown, it’s possible for a literary pilgrim to visit what’s left of his liquor cabinet." Faulkner and Football
Noteworthy poetry and prose from her ladyship's bedside reading stack.
There are haunted places
There are haunted places, or at least it is easy to feel haunted in them, alone at nightfall. As the air darkens and the cool of the night rises, one feels the immanence of the wraiths of the ancient trivesmen who used to inhabit the rock houses of the cliffs; of the white hunters from the east of the mountains; of the farmers who accepted the isolation of these nearly inaccessible valleys to crop the narrow bottoms and ridges and pasture their cattle cattle and hogs in the woods; of the seekers of quick wealth in timber and ore. For though this is a wilderness place, it bears its part of the burden of human history. If one spends much time here and feels much liking for the place, it is hard to escape the sense of one's predecessors. If one has read of the prehistoric Indians whose flint arrowpoints and pottery and hominy holes and petroglyphs have been found here, then every rock shelter and clifty spring will suggest the presence of those dim people who have disappeared into the eart. Walking along the ridges and the stream bottoms, one will come upon the heaped stones of a chimney, or the slowly filly depression of an old cellar, or will find in the spring a japonica bush or periwinkles or a few jonquils blooming in a thicket that used to be a dooryard. Wherever the land is level enough there are abandoned fields and pastures. And nearly always there is the evidence that one follows in the steps of the loggers.
That sense of the past is probably one reason for the melancholy that I feel. But I know there are other reasons.
--Wendell Berry, "An Entrance to the Woods" in The Art of the Personal Essay, edited by Phillip Lopate (Anchor Books, 1995)
Great southern books, fresh off the vine! Picked for you with care by Southern Indie Booksellers
Waking by Ron Rash Hub City Press, 2011
Abandoned Still on Dismal Mountain
At first a truck radiator sprounting improbably in this laurel slick-- too far a haul to get rid of, to hide if theft. I stumble on coiled copper, know what it is, or was, the radiator rusty, the logs mushroomed, mossy, a wind and rain tumble of tubing and quart mason jars. Perhaps he left for greener pastures of marijuana, or his stingy fire smoke signaled the sheriff or simply grew too old to make this climb and go back burdened to lighten the mind, the burlap sack clinking and clanking.
Rooted in places like Watauga County, Goshen Creek, and Dismal Mountain, the poems in Ron Rash’s fourth collection, Waking, electrify dry counties and tobacco fields until they sparkle with the rituals and traditions of Southerners in the stir of their lives.
In his first book of poetry in nearly a decade, Rash leads his readers on a Southern odyssey, full of a terse wit and a sense of the narrative so authentic it will dazzle you. As we wake inside these poems, we see rivers wild with trout, lightning storms, and homemade churches, nailed and leaning against the side of a Tennessee mountain. A two-time PEN/Faulkner Award Finalist, Rash has been compared to writers like John Steinbeck and Cormac McCarthy. With his eye for the perfect detail and an ear for regional idiom, Rash furthers his claim as the new torchbearer for literature in the American South.
Here is a book full of sorrow and redemption, sparseness and the beauty of a single, stark detail—the muskellunge at first light, a barn choked with curing tobacco, a porch full of men and the rockers that move them over the same spot until they carve their names into the ground, deeper, even, into the roots where myths start, into the very marrow of the world.
Having just opened its real-world doors this month, Avid Bookshop is a community-focused independent bookstore in Athens, Georgia. Visit us at 493 Prince Avenue in in-town Athens (next to the Fire Hall #2/Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation) or online at http://www.avidbookshop.com
What are "STARS" authors? These are authors listing in the Southern Traveling Authors Registration Service--a directory of authors who live in, or are traveling in the South and are interested in meeting with book clubs, civic groups, classrooms, and readers of all kinds. The STARS directory is brought to you by Southern Indie Booksellers, who want to connect readers with their favorite writers.
Blood Clay tells the story of Tracey Gaines, who has moved to rural Saul County, North Carolina, to escape the wreckage of a divorce and becomes a teacher at an alternative school. She devotes herself to renovating an old farmhouse but finds she can't as easily build connections in this new place. When the community splits, she finds an ally in Dave Fordham, a native son who struck out for new opportunities, only to face his own trauma and a forced return home. Elizabeth Stuckey-French says, "Val Nieman has written what is destined to become a classic novel of Southern life."
Elizabeth Stuckey-French says, "Val Nieman has written what is destined to become a classic novel of Southern life."
Her collection of short stories, Fidelities, appeared in 2004 from West Virginia University Press, featuring stories that first appeared in The Kenyon Review, Arts & Letters, West Branch, and other journals and anthologies. Her first novel, Neena Gathering, was a science fiction paperback that was also translated for the Brazilian market. Her second novel, Survivors, was a story of loss and recovery in a Rust Belt town in the 1970s. A poetry collection, Wake Wake Wake, including work published in two chapbooks, and in Blackbird, Poetry, New Letters, REDiViDER, and in numerous anthologies. Her work has appeared recently or is forthcoming in NC Literary Review, Connotations Press: An Online Artifact, Crab Creek Review, ABZ, Still, and anthologies from Bottom Dog Press and Jacar Press. She won the inaugural Byron Herbert Reece Poetry Prize, and was a finalist in the James Applewhite Prize and the Guy Owen Poetry Prize competitions. A former newspaper reporter and editor, she has received an NEA creative writing fellowship, two Elizabeth Simpson Smith prizes in fiction, and the Greg Grummer Prize in poetry. A graduate of the M.F.A. program at Queens University of Charlotte, she teaches writing at N.C. A&T State University. She is the poetry editor for Prime Number magazine.
More STARS Authors: see the full list online here and find the authors touring in your area here
Kala Ambrose Durham, NC 10/27/2011-10/27/2011 Chapel Hill, NC 10/28/2011-10/28/2011 Raleigh, NC 10/30/2011-10/30/2011
Ellyn Bache Pawleys Island, SC 11/4/2011-11/4/2011 Wilmington, NC 11/5/2011-11/10/2011 Asheville,, NC 11/19/2011-11/20/2011 Maggie Bishop John C. Campbell Folk School, GA 10/30/2011-11/5/2011 Nancy B. Brewer Mooresville, NC 10/18/2011-10/18/2011
Mark Hainds Birmingham, AL 12/3/2011-12/6/2011 Tallahasee, FL 11/1/2011-11/4/2011 Ponchatoula, LA 10/29/2011-10/30/2011
Jennie Helderman Atlanta, GA 11/19/2011-11/19/2011 Sterling, VA 10/25/2011-10/29/2011
Mary Alice Monroe Nashville, TN 10/15/2011-10/15/2011 Miami, FL 11/19/2011-11/19/2011 Nancy Naigle Charlottesville, VA 10/15/2011-10/15/2011 Emporia, VA 12/5/2011-12/5/2011 Emporia, VA 12/8/2011-12/8/2011