Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

The Past Rising Up

Randall Kenan’s If I Had Two Wings returns to Tims Creek

In Randall Kenan’s new story collection, If I Had Two Wings, the residents of Tims Creek, North Carolina, often find themselves in bewildering circumstances, caught up in twists of fate that demand an unrehearsed response. 

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American Crow to Great White Shark

The Southern Wildlife Watcher surveys the region’s creatures

Rob Simbeck takes a close look at 36 creatures in The Southern Wildlife Watcher: Notes of a Naturalist, offering readers glimpses of the mundane and the miraculous. Simbeck will discuss the book at a virtual event hosted by Parnassus Books in Nashville on August 31 and at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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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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“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.

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Radical Joy

In Alice Randall’s Black Bottom Saints, a dying man eulogizes the “Black Camelot” of mid-20th-century Detroit 

In Alice Randall’s fifth novel, Black Bottom Saints, a terminally ill columnist, club impresario, and dance school founder dictates tender hagiographies of the Black creatives who built and nurtured a thriving community in mid-20th-century Detroit. Randall will discuss the book at a virtual event hosted by Fisk University on August 18 and at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online October 1-11.

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Fresh Soil in Old Territory

Ron Rash’s In the Valley displays his masterful command of short fiction  

From haunting, short-form meditations on loss to a thrilling, suspenseful novella that revives an indelible antihero, In the Valley offers a distillation of Ron Rash’s storytelling mastery at its best. Rash will discuss In the Valley at a virtual event hosted by Union Ave. Books in Knoxville on August 18 and at the 2020 Southern Festival of Books, held online Oct. 1-11.

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