Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Fernanda Moore

Pretty in Prose

Actor and teen star Molly Ringwald talks with Chapter 16 about reinventing herself as a novelist

September 10, 2012 Long before director John Hughes cast the then-teenaged Molly Ringwald as the star of Sixteen Candles, she was a singer with a jazz album (I Wanna Be Loved By You, recorded with her father’s band) under her belt. Now Ringwald, forty-four, has written When It Happens to You, a novel composed of eight linked stories. The author and actor recently answered questions from Chapter 16 prior to her appearance at the Nashville Public Library on September 18 at 6:15 p.m. as part of the Salon@615 series. The event is free and open to the public.

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The World is Not So Different Now

Legendary author Judith Viorst talks with Chapter 16 about her work, her kids, and the bratty heroine of her new book for young readers

September 5, 2012 The beloved picture book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day established Judith Viorst as a world-famous children’s author, but the versatile author has also written non-fiction, humorous poetry, novels for adults (notably the wickedly funny Murdering Mr. Monti: A Merry Little Tale of Sex and Violence), and even a musical. Viorst, now eighty-one, will discuss her newest book for children, Lulu Walks the Dogs, at the twenty-fourth annual Southern Festival of Books, held October 12-14 at Legislative Plaza in Nashville. All events are free and open to the public.

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Drop Dead Funny

In pursuing all the health advice he could find, A.J. Jacobs was willing to try almost anything (though he drew the line at yogurt colonics)

August 9, 2012 A.J. Jacobs is “okay looking ridiculous as long as there’s a chance it will lead to something interesting or insightful.” In fact he’s the kind of writer for whom virtually every experience leads to something interesting—and very, very funny. Jacobs is the author of The Know-It-All, for which he read the entire Encyclopaedia Britannica, and The Year of Living Biblically, in which he spent a year living by the literal prohibitions of the Bible, including stoning adulterers (with pebbles). His newest book is Drop Dead Healthy: One Man’s Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection, which he will discuss at the twenty-fourth annual Southern Festival of Books, held October 12-14 at Legislative Plaza in Nashville. In advance of his visit, he took Chapter 16’s Fernanda Moore to a Manhattan health-food restaurant for lunch.

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The Canon—In Full Color

Russ Kick’s graphic anthology of world literature is both an education and a playful romp

June 11, 2012 Russ Kick’s The Graphic Canon: Volume One: From The Epic of Gilgamesh to Shakespeare to Dangerous Liasons is the first book in a three-volume series featuring the work of dozens of graphic artists addressing the landmarks of world literature. The results are, as the saying goes, mixed—but not in a bad way. The Graphic Canon is a glorious mash-up of not only words and images, but also high and low culture, the popular and the paradigmatic. Kick will discuss The Graphic Canon at The Booksellers at Laurelwood in Memphis on June 14 at 6 p.m.

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Best of the Achaeans

Madeline Miller’s acclaimed debut novel introduces The Iliad’s great hero as a fighter and a lover

April 10, 2012 Madeline Miller’s debut novel, The Song of Achilles, aims to uncover the passionate love story hidden inside the greatest war epic in Western literature. The romantic leads are Achilles, the Greek war-hero par excellence, and Patroclus, his tent mate and best friend. Whether the men were actually lovers or simply “boon companions” has been up for debate since Homer first composed his epic saga of the Trojan War, but the love story Miller tells is glorious, and the context in which it plays out is faithful to the original. Miller will discuss The Song of Achilles at Parnassus Books in Nashville on April 17 at 6:30 p.m.

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The Weird Sister

Jake Bohstedt Morrill’s epistolary fable probes the darker side of sibling rivalry

March 29, 2012 Jake Bohstedt Morrill, a Unitarian minister in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, is also a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and Harvard Divinity School. His debut novel, Randy Bradley—a tiny hardcover volume very reminiscent of Maurice Sendak’s Nutshell Library—is an off-kilter narrative constructed around a massive, mysterious squabble between two sisters. Morrill recently spoke with Chapter 16 about literature, postmodernism, and why he’s drawn to aggrieved characters.

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