Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Hamilton Cain

The Complex Odyssey of a Life

Randal O’Wain’s Meander Belt recalls a blue-collar youth

In Meander Belt, M. Randal O’Wain crafts an impressionistic self-portrait of a young man determined to escape the buzz saw of poverty and a family forever on the edge of disaster. O’Wain will discuss Meander Belt at Novel in Memphis on November 29 and at Union Ave. Books in Knoxville on February 14.

Read more

Siblings in Exile

A brother and sister wrestle with the past in Ann Patchett’s The Dutch House

Ann Patchett’s The Dutch House traces the complex and often torturous history of a pair of siblings and the alluring mansion they called home, once upon a time. 

Read more

A Mystical Blend of Humor and Heartbreak

Realism and fantasy mix in Etgar Keret’s Fly Already

Etgar Keret’s story collection Fly Already takes readers into a quirky yet penetrating world. Keret will appear at the John C. Hodges Library at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville on September 16.

Read more

True Memoir of a False Life

A real musician becomes a bogus performer in Sounds Like Titanic

Jessica Chiccehitto Hindman recalls her job as a fake concert violinist in her witty memoir, Sounds Like Titanic. Hindman will discuss the book at the 2019 Southern Festival of Books, held in Nashville on October 11-13.

Read more

In Colder Blood

Casey Cep’s Furious Hours tells the true story of Harper Lee’s plan to out-Capote her old friend Truman Capote

Casey Cep structures Furious Hours, her debut nonfiction book, around three leading characters: an Alabama serial killer, the lawyer who defended him, and novelist Harper Lee, who hoped to write their story. Cep will discuss the book at the East Tennessee History Center in Knoxville on May 17.

Read more

Say It with Fondue

Helen Ellis’s Southern Lady Code is a gimlet-eyed, laugh-out-loud collection of linked essays

Southern Lady Code, writes Helen Ellis, is “a technique by which, if you don’t have something nice to say, you say something not-so-nice in a nice way.” Ellis will discuss her new essay collection at Parnassus Books in Nashville on April 30.

Read more