With a reputation as an inspiring and nurturing home for writers, N.C. has a rich and thriving literary heritage to enjoy. Known for residents like Thomas Wolfe, Pulitzer Prize winner Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, Allan Gurganus, Lee Smith, Charles Frazier and Ron Rash, our state continues to welcome new generations of prolific writers; here are just a few of their recent releases. Look for them at independent bookstores like Malaprops Bookstore and Cafe in Asheville, McIntyre’s Fine Books at Fearington Village in Pittsboro, The Regulator Bookshop in Durham, Fireside Books and Gifts in Forest City and City Lights Bookstore in Sylva.
State of the World 2011: Innovations that Nourish the Planet
Fred Bahnson, contributor
“Illuminates a multitude of encouraging answers that are already saving lives and livelihoods. It is an eloquent, painstakingly researched sound of warning and expression of hope,” writes Rick Docksai, The Futurist. Bahnson is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
“Boggs’s stories are connected subtly and organically, filled with damaged creatures who live out their tough, wise-cracking existences in Virginia’s semi-rural Mattaponi River region … where 400 years ago stood the Mattaponi chief Powhattan, his daughter Pocahontas, her eventual husband John Smith, and English colonists who launched an era of violence still felt by Boggs’s people, Indian, white, and black alike,” writes Stacy Muszynski, TheRumpus.net. Boggs is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
The Night Train
Little, Brown and Company
“Clyde Edgerton’s slim, charming 10th novel is set in the rural South, as the spring of 1963 turns into summer … The biggest moments in this engaging tale are small, and relentlessly upbeat: intimacy trumps bigotry, music expands minds, violence is averted where 10 years earlier it would have been all but assured,” writes Adam Mansbach, The New York Times.
Literary Trails of the North Carolina Piedmont
The N.C. Arts Council in association with UNC Press
The second in a series of three literary explorations is “not just a guidebook but a wealth of information, images book and article excerpts … would be worth reading even if you aren’t traveling,” says Home & Away Magazine.
“The novel offers an edgy, blood-limned, grim fairy tale, fenced round by the search of a troubled almost-family looking for closures and healing,” writes Charles McNair, books editor, Paste Magazine. Frazier is a 1997–1998 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
Second-Skin Rhinestone-Spangled Nude Soufflé Chiffon Gown
Cider Press Review
“These exquisite poems are both sensually compelling and intellectually rigorous — a rare feat indeed,” writes David St. John, judge, 2009 Cider Press Review Book Award. Godfrey is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
Accidental Birds of the Carolinas
A short story collection about newcomers and natives and the healing power of the rural South.
“Many of Hudson’s narratives explore themes of family — found, invented or inherited — navigating the often suffocating nature of belonging, or the catastrophes of reinvention,” writes Kathryn Savage, Minneapolis-St. Paul Star-Tribune. Hudson is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
This “true story of marriage and murder in the suburbs” follows the story of Nancy Cooper, a mother of two from Cary and her husband’s trial for her murder.
Grand Central Publishing
Maron’s 17th mystery featuring district court judge Deborah Knott takes her to New York City, where she has a first-time meeting with Lt. Sigrid Harald — one of Maron’s earliest characters.
Deep Light: New and Selected Poems
“A dazzling first book of personal essays, each one so sensitively (and sensuously) rooted in actual existence that I continually had to remind myself that I was reading about someone’s life, not living it myself,” writes Robert Atwan, editor of The Best American Essays. McClanahan is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.
You Don’t Sweat Much for a Fat Girl: Observations on Life from the Shallow End of the Pool
St. Martin’s Griffin
“Rivenbark’s edgy humor pokes fun at how our nation embraces cuteness — right down to cartoon bears showing how soft toilet paper can be. Ironically, she points out that it’s not kids who purchase the product, but adults,” writes Kathleen M. Purcell, www.bookreporter.com.
Louise’s War: A World War II Novel of Suspense
Sarah R. Shaber
Severn House Publishers
“The country girl beats the odds and makes an auspicious debut in Shaber’s new series … read this gentle espionage novel and find out what people were doing on the home front,” writes Teresa L. Jacobsen, Library Journal Online.
Sinners of Sanction County
Charles Dodd White
Bottom Dog Press
A collection of short stories about hardship and survival in contemporary Appalachia. Award-winning author Ron Rash says White is “one of Appalachia’s best short story writers. He’s the real deal.” White is a 2010–2011 N.C. Arts Council Fellowship recipient.