Fiction

Coal Noir

Jason Miller explores the bleak wilds of coal country in Down Don’t Bother Me, a darkly comic take on the hardboiled detective genre

by Ed Tarkington

March 18, 2015 Jason Miller’s debut crime novel, Down Don’t Bother Me, is a clever variation on Raymond Chandler-style noir with the blue-collar soul of Chris Offutt and the wry black humor of Tom Waits. Miller will give a reading at Parnassus Books in Nashville at 6:30 p.m. on March 24, 2015, and at The Booksellers at Laurelwood in Memphis at 6:30 p.m. on March 31.

Published Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Love, Survival, and the Power of the Press

LaShonda Katrice Barnett’s Jam on the Vine tells the story of a young black journalist in the Jim Crow era

by Maria Browning

March 17, 2014 Ivoe Williams, the heroine of LaShonda Katrice Barnett’s debut novel, Jam on the Vine, is an African-American girl born in turn-of-the-twentieth-century Texas to poor, hardworking parents. The story of Ivoe’s trials and triumphs as an aspiring journalist provides a vivid depiction of the black experience during one of the ugliest periods in American history. Barnett will appear at Parnassus Books in Nashville on March 23, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

Published Tuesday, 17 March 2015

What Makes Us Who We Are?

In her debut novel, Memphis native Moriah McStay explores the way our experiences shape us

by Tracy Barrett

March 11, 2015 Fiona Doyle’s face was horribly scarred when she was a little girl. But what if the accident had never happened? Moriah McStay’s Everything That Makes You follows Fiona and an alternative, unscarred version of herself, exploring how much (and how little) would change if we could turn back the clock and “fix” what we think is wrong with our lives. McStay will read from her debut novel at The Booksellers at Laurelwood in Memphis on March 17, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

Published Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Crazy in Mississippi

Jamie Kornegay’s Soil introduces a Faulknerian character stuck in a world of Internet conspiracies and noisy four-wheelers

by Michael Ray Taylor

March 10, 2015 What would happen if the grandson of a Snopes studied sustainable agriculture and Internet-fueled apocalypse scenarios? Nothing good, as Jamie Kornegay suggests in Soil, his beautifully written debut novel. Kornegay will read at Parnassus Books in Nashville on March 17, 2015, and at The Booksellers at Laurelwood in Memphis on March 18, 2015. Both events will take place at 6:30 p.m.

Published Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Fiction as Autobiography

Claire Vaye Watkins talks with novelist Adam Ross about her celebrated debut story collection, Battleborn

by Adam Ross

March 9, 2015 Claire Vaye Watkins, writes novelist Adam Ross, has “known the worst kind of loss. She’s also transformed it into startling, original fiction." Watkins will appear at Vanderbilt University on March 12, 2015, at 7 p.m. This event, part of the Vanderbilt Visiting Writers Series, is free and open to the public.

Published Monday, 9 March 2015

Where the Half-Truths Live

In Monday’s Lie by Jamie Mason, a secret agent’s daughter finally confronts her past

by Kathryn Justice Leache

March 5, 2015 Dee Aldrich, protagonist of Jamie Mason’s new thriller, Monday’s Lie, struggles to decrypt her late mother’s mysterious past and connect it with a present-day crisis. Jamie Mason will appear at Parnassus Books in Nashville on March 12, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

Published Thursday, 5 March 2015

Ethnic Identity Theft

In Joshua Ferris’s To Rise Again at a Decent Hour, cyber-stalking leads to personal revelation

by Sean Kinch

March 4, 2015 The new novel by Joshua Ferris, To Rise Again at a Decent Hour, tells the story of a Manhattan dentist, Paul O’Rourke, whose practice is in perfect working order but whose personal life is an unqualified mess. Ferris will appear at Salon@615 at 6:15 p.m. at the Nashville Public Library on March 10, 2015. The salon is a free, ticketed event.

Published Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Students of Reinvention

In Holly LeCraw’s The Half Brother, a Southern teacher seeks reinvention in a New England boarding school

by Emily Choate

March 2, 2015 In Holly LeCraw’s The Half Brother, Atlanta-raised Charlie Garrett arrives at his teaching post in a wealthy New England boarding school seeking reinvention. When he falls into a powerful entanglement with his school’s chaplain, Charlie finds himself pulled closer into the strong orbit of his own past. Holly LeCraw will discuss The Half Brother at Parnassus Books in Nashville on March 9, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

Published Monday, 2 March 2015

Restless Cravings

With Into the Savage Country, Shannon Burke delivers a grand adventure in the tradition of Jack London

by Ed Tarkington

February 26, 2015 Set in the Wild West of the early nineteenth century, Shannon Burke’s new historical novel, Into the Savage Country, is a deftly written novel of love and adventure that evokes the classic tales of Jack London and Robert Louis Stevenson. Burke will appear at the Laurel Theater in Knoxville on March 5, 2015, at 7 p.m. in an event sponsored by the Knoxville Writer’s Guild. On April 6, 2015, at 7 p.m., he will give a reading at the John C. Hodges Library on the University of Tennessee campus in Knoxville as part of the Writers in the Library series.

Published Thursday, 26 February 2015

A Collection of Oddities

Mosquitoland, a debut YA novel by David Arnold, introduces a snarky but beguiling teen protagonist

by Susannah Felts

February 25, 2015 Mosquitoland, the debut novel from former Nashvillian David Arnold, introduces a beguiling new voice in young-adult fiction. Edgy, insightful, and full of heart, the novel is a road narrative that readers of all ages should fall for. Arnold will appear at Parnassus Books in Nashville on March 3, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

Published Wednesday, 25 February 2015

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