Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Joy Ramirez

A Bold, Tender Voice

Make Me Rain delivers quintessential Nikki Giovanni

For more than five decades, Nikki Giovanni has written about what it means to be a Black woman in America, calling attention to the injustices suffered by her community but also to its joys and triumphs. In her new collection of poetry and prose, Make Me Rain, her unique voice, bold yet tender, is on display again with a new relevance.

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Seeing Other Possibilities

Julia Alvarez talks with Chapter 16 about sisterhood, global community, and living by metaphor

Award-winning author Julia Alvarez helped pave the way for other Latina writers in the U.S. with her 1991 debut novel, How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents. Alvarez talks with Chapter 16 about her latest novel, Afterlife, and what it means to envision new possibilities in this troubled time. She will appear at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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Cooking Through COVID

On the power of feeding people during hard times

Hard times have always pushed me into the kitchen, a place where I feel comfortable and safe. Feeding other people also makes me feel a little less powerless.

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Honoring the Struggle

Fred Arroyo’s Sown in Earth offers a tender understanding of the immigrant experience

In a powerful collection of essays, MTSU professor Fred Arroyo remembers his immigrant father and considers his own evolution as a writer.

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Scrappy Survivors

Claire Jimenez’s debut story collection packs a punch

Staten Island Stories, the debut story collection from Vanderbilt M.F.A. grad Claire Jimenez, depicts the diverse lives of the forgotten borough. Jimenez and poet Cara Dees will discuss their work at Vanderbilt University in Nashville on March 20.

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Redemption Story

Free Cyntoia recounts a journey from victim to activist

At 16, Cyntoia Brown-Long was imprisoned for murdering a much older man. Her memoir, Free Cyntoia, tells the story of her awakening to her own history of abuse and her efforts to save other young women from the horrors of trafficking.

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