Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Doing the Work

Nikky Finney’s fifth poetry collection is an essential collage of life and art

Love Child’s Hotbed of Occasional Poetry, Nikky Finney’s first new collection in nearly 10 years, demonstrates how the National Book Award-winning poet continues to push herself and expand our idea of poetry’s scope. Finney will appear at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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The Past Is Never Dead

A new memoir by Lawrence Wells pulls back the curtain on a Southern literary community

Lawrence Wells and his wife, the late Dean Faulkner Wells, had a rare view into the literary community of Oxford, Mississippi, during their nearly 40 years together. Wells recounts it all in his engaging memoir, In Faulkner’s Shadow. He’ll discuss the book at an online event hosted by Novel in Memphis on September 28.

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Dreams and Nightmares

Nicholas Buccola dissects the dramatic 1965 debate between James Baldwin and William F. Buckley

In The Fire Is Upon Us, Nicholas Buccola tells the story of the famous Cambridge Union confrontation between James Baldwin and William F. Buckley, revealing both the roots of our current racial dilemmas and the experiences of these two significant intellectuals. Buccola will join a virtual conversation with Terrence Tucker of the University of Memphis on September 24.

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A Glorious and Invisible Map

In M.O. Walsh’s endearing new novel, a strange machine disrupts life in a small Southern town

The Big Door Prize, a new novel from M.O. Walsh, poses a big what if: What if a vending machine could read your DNA and provide your “potential life station?” The answers shake up residents of a small Southern town in ways that are by turns comical and profound. Walsh will discuss the novel at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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Traitor to Whom?

Amanda McCrina’s YA novel explores shifting allegiances in a time of conflict

Franklin writer Amanda McCrina’s new YA novel, Traitor, follows Toyla, a young soldier whose family heritage embodies both sides of a wartime conflict in the city of Lwów.   

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Following the Story Wherever It Goes

After three decades in children’s books, acclaimed author-illustrator David Wiesner is still eager to innovate

David Wiesner talks to Chapter 16 about his newest picture book, Robobaby, and returning to the Southern Festival of Books after nearly 30 years. Wiesner will appear at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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