Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Tracy Barrett

Everything Here Is Dead

A lonely boy unravels the mystery of his own death

In The Visitors, Greg Howard’s third middle-grade novel, a 12-year-old boy is “stuck” in a neglected plantation in South Carolina, along with other inhabitants — some benevolent, some definitely not. When three visitors arrive to investigate a long-ago mystery, the boy starts to unearth memories of his past. Greg Howard will discuss The Visitors at a virtual event hosted by Parnassus Books in Nashville on January 31.

Read more

Wherever You Go, There You Are

A teenager explores her heritage and herself in Delhi

In Sheba Karim’s fourth YA novel, The Marvelous Mirza Girls, Noreen is grieving the death of her beloved aunt. She postpones her first year of college and travels to Delhi, where — with the charming Kabir as her guide — she explores the chaotic and beautiful city, a stark contrast to her suburban New Jersey home. Karim will discuss The Marvelous Mirza Girls at Parnassus Books in Nashville on May 18.

Read more

She Loved Baseball

Andrea Williams tells the story of Effa Manley in Baseball’s Leading Lady

Nashville author Andrea Williams formerly worked in marketing and development for the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Missouri. Her wide knowledge of the subject is evident in her first book for young readers, Baseball’s Leading Lady: Effa Manley and the Rise and Fall of the Negro Leagues, an account of the only woman in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Williams will discuss the book at a virtual event hosted by Parnassus Books in Nashville on January 9 at 2 p.m.

Read more

“There’s No Way to Know Which Dragonfly is My Brother”

A 14-year-old makes a difficult journey of self-discovery

Award-winning author Kacen Callender returns to middle-grade fiction with King and the Dragonflies. King is convinced that his much-loved older brother, Khalid, became a dragonfly after he died suddenly. King has to struggle through his own and his family’s grief while grappling with the nature of friendship and his questions about his sexuality. Callender will appear at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

Read more

A Heroine for Our Times

A determined girl saves lives in war-torn Poland

Sharon Cameron’s The Light in Hidden Places is a novelization of the true lifesaving deeds of Stefania Podgórska, who hid 13 Jews in a small attic during the Nazi occupation of Poland.

Read more

Fake It Till You Make It

A junior entrepreneur and a budding drag queen set their sights on stardom

In Greg Howard’s second middle-grade novel, Middle School’s a Drag: You Better Werk!, entrepreneurial pre-teen Mikey Pruitt thinks his new talent agency can’t miss, now that he’s representing an eighth-grade aspiring drag queen. Readers won’t be surprised to find out that things don’t go as smoothly as Mikey anticipates. Howard will discuss the book at Parnassus Books in Nashville on February 11, at Union Ave. Books in Knoxville on February 13, and at the SE-YA Book Fest in Murfreesboro on March 12-14.

Read more