Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

The Word from Nashville

Margaret Renkl surveys a complex, confounding region

In Graceland, at Last, Margaret Renkl provides an introduction to the contemporary South and offers a corrective to some persistent oversimplifications. Renkl will discuss her work at Vanderbilt University in Nashville on February 24.

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Stories Connect Us

Caitlin Hamilton Summie’s first novel explores the heart of a proud Midwestern family

Geographies of the Heart, the first novel from Knoxville writer Caitlin Hamilton Summie, depicts a close-knit Midwestern family over 25 years as they weather the daily trials and losses of life with quiet dignity.

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Speaking Ida’s Truth for a New Generation

Michelle Duster writes a children’s book about her great-grandmother, Ida B. Wells

Ida B. Wells, Voice of Truth, written by Wells’ great-granddaughter Michelle Duster, captures the life and work of the groundbreaking journalist and civil rights advocate.

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A Single Drop of Blood

Two teens work to overturn a murder conviction in this twisty YA mystery

In We Were Kings, the latest YA novel from Court Stevens, 18-year-old Nyla and her new friend, Sam, race against time to solve a decades-old cold case and save the life of a woman they believe to be wrongfully imprisoned for the crime. Stevens will discuss We Were Kings with Sharon Cameron at a virtual event hosted by Parnassus Books in Nashville on February 9.

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“Penelope Looks Back”

Book Excerpt: Focal Point

Jenny Qi’s essays and poems have been published in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Tin House, ZYZZYVA, Rattle, and elsewhere. Qi, a 2011 graduate of Vanderbilt University, holds a Ph.D. in biomedical science from the University of California, San Francisco and works as a competitive intelligence manager tracking research in oncology. Focal Point is her first book.

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Obsessed with Understanding

Poet Jenny Qi on what shapes her work

The child of Chinese immigrants, Jenny Qi entered Vanderbilt at 16, lost her mother while she was still an undergraduate, and went on to earn a Ph.D. in biomedical science while pouring her grief into poetry. Her award-winning debut collection, Focal Point, explores sorrow, death, and what we owe to each other.

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