Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Two Nations in Thy Womb

The arrival of mixed-race twins stirs local violence in Eleanor Henderson’s The Twelve-Mile Straight

The surprising appearance of twin newborns—one dark-skinned, the other pale and freckled—creates upheaval in a Depression-era South Georgia community. Eleanor Henderson will discuss The Twelve-Mile Straight at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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The Stench of Slavery

Ben H. Winters creates an alternate history in which the Civil War never took place

In the alternative history Ben H. Winters creates in Underground Airlines, slavery has flourished in the Hard Four—Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and a unified Carolina—because it is essential to the economic prosperity of the plantations. Winters will appear at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15. Festival events are free and open to the public.

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Thunder on the Right

Jared Yates Sexton rides the election storm surge in The People Are Going to Rise Like the Waters Upon Your Shore

The People Are Going to Rise Like the Waters Upon Your Shore, an account of Jared Yates Sexton’s year on the 2016 campaign trail, describes Donald Trump’s rise to power and Hillary Clinton’s unexpected crash. Sexton will appear at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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Burn Me Anew

A man confronts a legacy of abusive therapy in Nick White’s How to Survive a Summer

At the center of Nick White’s striking debut novel, How to Survive a Summer, is the burden of an unconfronted trauma at a long-defunct “gay conversion therapy” camp. White will discuss How to Survive a Summer at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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Coal Miners’ Hero

Holly Gleason bring together an all-star cast of writers for Woman Walk the Line

Woman Walk the Line: How the Women in Country Music Changed Our Lives explores the work of the first females of country music. Holly Gleason, the book’s editor, will appear at the Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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Book of Truths

Leah Weiss offers a bittersweet portrayal of an Appalachian community circa 1970

At times Leah Weiss’s debut novel, If the Creek Don’t Rise, reads like an Appalachian Rashomon, with multiple voices describing similar events in the tiny community of Baines Creek, North Carolina. Weiss will appear at Union Ave. Books in Knoxville on September 21 at 6 p.m., at Parnassus Books in Nashville on September 23 at 2 p.m., and at the Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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