To Haunt and to Goad

John Jeremiah Sullivan talks with Chapter 16 about writing nonfiction in the Internet age

by Susannah Felts

February 9, 2016 John Jeremiah Sullivan’s voice is uniquely equipped to snare readers in lengthy examinations of topics they never considered worthy of much thought. The author most recently of Pulphead, Sullivan is widely considered to be one of the great nonfiction writers of this age. He will give a free public address at the University of the South in Sewanee on February 15, 2016.

Published Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Black Power’s Prophet

Peniel Joseph chronicles the life of Stokely Carmichael, a global icon of revolution

by Aram Goudsouzian

February 5, 2016 Peniel Joseph’s Stokely: A Life details the life and importance of revolutionary icon Stokely Carmichael with such skill that it won the National Book Award from the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University of Memphis. In honor of the award, Joseph will speak at 11 a.m. on February 11, 2016, at the University of Memphis.

Published Friday, 5 February 2016

The Little Bookstore That Could

With the launch of Star Line Books, Star Lowe celebrates her faith in Chattanooga readers

by Tina Chambers

February 2, 2016 Star Line Books, Chattanooga’s only independent bookstore, opened last August just across Market Street from the famed Chattanooga Choo-Choo. Owner Star Lowe is passionate about books, her customers, and the Chattanooga community. She only wishes she had more time to read.

Published Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Advice from a True Believer

Mary Karr celebrates the examined life in The Art of Memoir

by Maria Browning

February 1, 2016 Mary Karr, one of the contemporary masters of memoir, is a true believer in the transformative power of the form. In The Art of Memoir, she offers a short course in the joys and challenges of writing the story of your own life. She will appear in discussion with songwriter Rodney Crowell at the Green Door Gourmet in Nashville on February 6, 2016. The event is a benefit for The Porch Writers’ Collective.

Published Monday, 1 February 2016

Unsung Heroes of a Neglected Region

Michael E. Birdwell and W. Calvin Dickinson have collected fifteen essays on the history of the Upper Cumberland

by Ralph Bowden

January 28, 2016 The Upper Cumberland region—i.e. the watershed counties of the upstream half of the Cumberland River in Kentucky and Tennessee—was relatively isolated for much of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; as a result, it was neglected by historians. Its history is rich and worth investigating, however, as editors Michael E. Birdwell and W. Calvin Dickinson prove with People of the Upper Cumberland.

Published Thursday, 28 January 2016


Today-show host Hoda Kotb tells the real-life stories of people finding their way

by Michael Ray Taylor

January 26, 2016 Working with Tennessee-based author Jane Lorenzi, Today-show host Hoda Kotb tells the stories of ordinary people who discovered their purpose in life. Kotb will discuss Where We Belong: Journeys That Show Us the Way at the Nashville Public Library on January 31, 2016, at 3 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Published Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Long May We Run

Michael Bess talks with Chapter 16 about Our Grandchildren Redesigned, a speculative look at the near future

by Peter Kuryla

January 20, 2016 Historian of technology Michael Bess talks with Chapter 16 about the human relationship to machines, representations of the future in science fiction, the problem of labor and work in a bioengineered society, and what it will mean to be human in the coming decades. His new book is Our Grandchildren Redesigned: Life in the Bioengineered Society of the Near Future.

Published Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Grand Young Opry

Charles K. Wolfe’s A Good-Natured Riot tells the tale of an American icon’s infancy

by Randy Fox

January 15, 2016 A Good-Natured Riot, Charles K. Wolfe’s classic history of the Grand Ole Opry’s early years, delivers an engaging and essential history of an almost forgotten era in country music. The book, originally released in 1999, is now available in paperback.

Published Friday, 15 January 2016

Kitchen Babies

Former rocker Freda Love Smith teaches her son to cook—and writes a splendid memoir along the way

by Susannah Felts

January 13, 2016 A gritty rock club and a modest home kitchen might seem like opposite ends of the earth. But in Freda Love Smith’s new book, Red Velvet Underground, the two are deliciously twined. A memoir seasoned with recipes, this story charts the coming of age of both mother and child as Smith teaches her teenage son how to cook. Smith will appear at Parnassus Books in Nashville on January 19, 2016.

Published Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Forbidden Voices and Outlaw Hearts

Appalachian writers reckon with their cultural inheritance in Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean

by Emily Choate

January 6, 2016 In Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean, a new essay anthology edited by Adrian Blevins and Karen Salyer McElmurray, contemporary Appalachian writers explore the secretive elements of their cultural inheritance.

Published Wednesday, 6 January 2016

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