Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

The Whole of a Life

Bobbie Ann Mason gives her heroine a second life in Dear Ann

In her vibrant new novel, Dear Ann, Bobbie Ann Mason imagines the life that might have been for Ann Workman, a graduate student who pursues love and English literature against the turbulent backdrop of the 1960s. Bobbie Ann Mason will appear at the online 2021 Southern Festival of Books on October 9.

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Leaving Hell Like a Dream Behind Them

Nazi war crimes and Cold War espionage fuel a YA historical thriller

In Bluebird, New York Times bestselling author Sharon Cameron gives her young readers a glimpse of the shocking treatment of innocent men, women, and children during World War II, contrasted with seemingly peaceful post-war New York City — but looks can be deceiving. Cameron will discuss Bluebird at an in-person session of the 2021 Southern Festival of Books held at Parnassus Books in Nashville on October 2.  

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Opening a Window on the Universe

Jess Walter on the audacity and terror of writing novels

Novelist Jess Walter talks with Chapter 16 about The Cold Millions, the sources of his fiction, and why he’s a “structuralist by nature.” Walter will appear at an in-person session of the 2021 Southern Festival of Books, held at Parnassus Books in Nashville on October 4.

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Empty Children

In The Prophets, debut novelist Robert Jones Jr. reimagines the slave narrative

The plantation at the center of Robert Jones Jr.’s The Prophets is called Empty, but this bold and poetic slave story is replete with passionate characters and disturbing events. Jones will discuss The Prophets at a 2021 Southern Festival of Books virtual event on September 30.

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Lucille’s Better Half

Blues legend B.B. King gets the royal treatment from biographer Daniel de Visé

Daniel de Visé’s King of the Blues: The Rise and Reign of B.B. King chronicles a life, traces a sound, and tells a story worthy of its iconic subject. Daniel de Visé will discuss the book at the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville on October 5. 

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Wolves in Shepherd’s Clothing

Jesus and John Wayne considers the “evangelical cult of masculinity”

Calvin University historian Kristin Kobes Du Mez analyzes a toxic mythology of manliness at the heart of evangelical culture in Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation. Du Mez will appear at a virtual session of the 2021 Southern Festival of Books on September 30.

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