Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Short Takes: unforgettable, multidimensional journeys

NY Times Book Review holiday roundup includes SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK as a top cookbook for giving this year, and Nashville Scene agrees: "includes of plenty of genuinely new and genuinely Southern food to prove that it's still a living, breathing cuisine." The book also appears in current issues of Smoky Mountain Living and Charleston Magazine, and is reviewed in the Raleigh News & Observer.

THE OYSTER QUESTION has won the 2010 book prize from the Forum for the History of Science in America, as mentioned here in the Rochester Business Journal. The judges for the prize noted, "By situating local knowledge and politics into her narrative, Keiner’s study captures the full complexity of the history of scientifically-informed environmental policy in the Chesapeake. In particular, the prize committee was impressed by her accessible and engaging prose, and her extensive notes that helped the reader navigate the complex history of the region, its politics, and its people." The book has already received awards from the Organization of American Historians and the Maryland Historical Trust.

The new issue of the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography reviews BROTHERS OF A VOW, a study of secret fraternal organizations in antebellum Virginia, praising in particular its role in helping to "enlarge our understanding of the culture and place of non-elite white men in the South."

Several strong reviews in the Alabama Review:
CARRY IT ON: "Ashmore makes a compelling case in an exceptional narrative, and she provides an outstanding analysis of the intersection of politics and economics in the aftermath of federal intervention in American inequality."

ON HARPER'S TRAIL: "Shores has done a masterful job of bringing together this enigmatic man's disparate traits to present the life of an accomplished but troubled individual whose contributions to science are only today becoming fully recognized."

SOUTHERN MASCULINITY: "a successful venture and a fascinating opening into the complex ideals of masculinity as they were imagined and acted out."

CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT mentioned in the Augusta Chronicle.In other Civil War news, press author Jim Cobb contributed a piece to Disunion, the New York Times blog that "follows the Civil War as it unfolded" in honor of the sesquicentennial.

Colin Cheney's HERE BE MONSTERS in The Bloomsbury Review: "This is not the easiest poetry to write, but it is a joy to read and ponder as he turns wisdom into unforgettable, multidimensional journeys."

In the Aiken Standard, Whit Gibbons recommends buying nature books for a local public or school library this holiday season.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Short Takes: Striving to Live Among Battering Forces

CHARLOTTE NC editors Heather Smith and Bill Graves appeared on WFAE Charlotte Talks Wednesday. Their event for the book that night at the Levine Museum of the New South drew more than 100 attendees. They were also interviewed for the Charlotte Business Journal.

SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK featured by Tasting Table and in Garden & Gun's Talk of the South newsletter.

Thoughtful piece by literary blogger Ron Slate on JACK LONDON, PHOTOGRAPHER: "London himself was always a story – and he comes across as a living presence among his photography. . . .This wonderful book, packed with London’s notes on the images he had taken so selectively, strongly communicates his unique humanity and his respect for people striving to live among battering biological and social forces."

Jennifer Jensen Wallach (CLOSER TO THE TRUTH THAN ANY FACT) named one of the History News Network's Top Young Historians.

The new Journal of Southern History includes reviews of WHAT VIRTUE THERE IS IN FIRE, GUTEN TAG, Y'ALL, and LATINO IMMIGRANTS AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE U.S. SOUTH. On Shep Krech's SPIRITS OF THE AIR: "This remarkable book combines historical ornithology, environmental prehistory and history, and aboriginal world views regarding birds . . . . A momentous work."

Philadelphia Inquirer profiles Cave Canem Poetry Prize winner Iain Haley Pollock, whose book SPIT BACK A BOY will be available in spring. Inside Spelman covers a recent event with poets Kyle Dargan (LOGORRHEA DEMENTIA) and Natasha Trethewey (BEYOND KATRINA), including video of the reading.

Walter Reeves (The Georgia Gardener) recommends AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES OF GEORGIA.

The Southeastern Museums Conference awarded the Georgia Museum of Art a gold medal for their exhibition catalog LORD LOVE YOU: WORKS BY R.A. MILLER FROM THE MULLIS COLLECTION. The catalog for the James E. Routh, Jr. graphic works exhibition, THE SOUTH IN BLACK AND WHITE, was awarded a silver medal.

Heather Russell and LEGBA'S CROSSING at the Miami Book Fair this weekend.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Short Takes

New in paper and still hot: THE BIGNESS OF THE WORLD in the San Francisco Chronicle and THE OYSTER QUESTION on the Marc Steiner Show.

Time magazine on the SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK: "It's as much Americana as cookbook, an effort to preserve a vanishing part of our culture. Either way, it's an instant classic." Also in the Jackson Clarion-Ledger, St. Petersburg Times, Dallas Morning News, and Winston Salem Journal. More food: on WDAV, Fred Sauceman on CORNBREAD NATION 5 and Dr. Enuf; CRAIG CLAIBORNE'S SOUTHERN COOKING on CNN's Eatocracy.

Orion magazine reviews FAMILY OF FALLEN LEAVES: "The first literary effort to embody, for a Western audience, the Vietnamese experience with the legacy of Agent Orange and its dioxin byproduct. . . . is welcome, if not long overdue. . . . the heavily researched introduction provides the needed historical, biological, and cultural context to sink right into these stories."

JACK LONDON, PHOTOGRAPHER in the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat and the Newark Star-Ledger "London, who indelibly inspired visual artists (including book illustrators such as N.C. Wyeth), was himself a splendid photographer, as proven by the beautiful reproductions in this dazzling book of images."

Kyle Dargan and LOGORRHEA DEMENTIA featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education and Poetry Daily.

Linda Grover (THE DANCE BOOTS) featured in an article on Native writers in the Twin Cities Daily Planet.

The Auk (from the American Ornithologists' Union) on THE BREEDING BIRD ATLAS OF GEORGIA: "So beautifully illustrated, it could be called a coffee-table book, but it is also a valuable reference." The AJC's Charles Seabrook on SALAMANDERS OF THE SOUTHEAST: "may inspire a greater appreciation for the fascinating creatures. The book is perhaps the most comprehensive and authoritative guide yet on the region’s salamanders."

New Pages praises SERIOUSLY FUNNY: "True to their promethean promise, 'there aren't many subjects that these poems overlook,' and Seriously Funny is stronger for it. Hamby and Kirby are astute editors, so the poems here comprise a wide variety of voices as well, avoiding an aural sameness or staleness that even the funniest of poems would evince if they all sounded exactly alike."

Upcoming events

Tuesday, November 16 @ 7:15 pm -- Atlanta, GA
Panel discussion at featuring Angie Mosier, past SFA Board President, with cookbook contributors Virginia Willis, Mike Klank, and Hugh Acheson
Georgia Center for the Book, Decatur Public Library

Wednesday, November 17 @ 4 pm -- Athens, GA
Annual Eidson lecture given by Jeanne Campbell Reesman, featuring JACK LONDON, PHOTOGRAPHER
265 Park Hall (Department of English), University of Georgia
Free and open to the public

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Short Takes: Prescient, Timely Genius

In a starred review, Library Journal called JACK LONDON, PHOTOGRAPHER "an unanticipated landmark, for London's groundbreaking work as a photojournalist has remained hidden until now... London was a prescient, timely genius; his work helped define the photojournalistic form, a new idea, now seen as the window into contemporary life. The book's visual bounty seems endless." A photo from the book appeared in the New York Times Sunday Book Review. This Sunday, co-author Jeanne Campbell Reesman will be at the Texas Book Festival for a panel on "The Lives of Jack London" with Jim Haley, author of the recent London biography Wolf.

THE SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK in Atlanta Magazine, and in a very scrumptious forthcoming food centerpiece in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (fried pickles, anyone?)The Fall issue of Edible Memphis celebrates the book's instructions for building a bacon forest: "Think Willy Wonka meets Benton's bacon."

Jeff Klinkenberg of the St. Petersburg Times on Tom Hallock's preoccupation with Bartram that led to WILLIAM BARTRAM, THE SEARCH FOR NATURE'S DESIGN. With video. Hallock will appear at the St. Petersburg Times Festival of Reading October 23.

Shots on the NEA blog of Natasha Trethewey at the 2010 National Book Festival; video of her remarks at the opening night gala on the Library of Congress site.

Boston Globe review of Jessica Treadway's PLEASE COME BACK TO ME -- "clear and searingly direct". A story by Lori Ostlund (THE BIGNESS OF THE WORLD)appears in the new Best American Short Stories 2010; "Imaginary Tuscon" by co-winner Geoffrey Becker (BLACK ELVIS) is listed as a "notable story" in the volume.

The Journal of Human Security on NONPROLIFERATION NORMS: "That so many questions readily spring forth after reading this book is a sign of its strength rather than weakness. Despite a century of available data on norms against the use of WMDs, Rublee is breaking a good deal of new ground."

CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT in the Augusta Chronicle. This and other Civil War titles now on sale on our web site.

Upcoming events:
Check out our sleeker, better author events page for additional events.

Wednesday, October 13 and Thursday, October 14
Georgia Review Tribute to Raymond Andrews in Athens, GA
Details in this Flagpole feature.

Thursday, October 14
2-4 pm
T.R.R. Cobb House, Athens, GA
Barry Brown and Rich Elwell sign copies of their new guide to Civil War sites in Georgia, CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Inscoe named Saye Professor of History

John Inscoe, noted for his work in Southern history, has been named Albert B. Saye Professor of History at the University of Georgia.

“I am very honored to hold a chair named for Dr. Saye, who made such a significant mark on the study of Georgia history and politics during his long, distinguished career here at UGA,” said Inscoe.

Inscoe is the author of numerous books including Race, War, and Remembrance in the Appalachian South and Mountain Masters: Slavery and the Sectional Crisis in Western North Carolina. He is editor of Enemies of the Country: New Perspectives on Unionists in the Civil War South and Georgia in Black and White: Explorations in Race Relations of a Southern State, 1865-1950. UGA Press will publish Inscoe’s Writing the South through the Self: Explorations in Southern Autobiography in spring 2011. In addition, Inscoe has served as the editor of the New Georgia Encyclopedia since its founding in 1999.

Albert Saye was widely known as a leading authority on state and federal constitutional law. The Press recently reissued two of his books, A Constitutional History of Georgia, 1732–1968 and A List of the Early Settlers of Georgia. Both titles are available as print editions or as free ebooks through the Georgia History Ebook Project.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Iain Haley Pollock wins Cave Canem Poetry Prize

Cave Canem Foundation, Inc., North America’s premier “home for black poetry,” is pleased to announce that Iain Haley Pollock has received the 2010 Cave Canem Poetry Prize for his manuscript, Spit Back a Boy, selected by Elizabeth Alexander. The University of Georgia Press will publish the collection in spring 2011. Additionally, Mr. Pollock will receive $1,000 and a feature reading. Pollock lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and teaches English at Chestnut Hill Academy. A Cave Canem fellow and an alumnus of the Creative Writing Program at Syracuse University, his poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Boston Review and Callaloo; poems are available online at The Drunken Boat and AGNI Online.

Established in 1999 with Rita Dove’s selection of Natasha Trethewey’s Domestic Work (Graywolf Press, 2000), the Cave Canem Poetry Prize is an annual first-book award dedicated to the discovery of exceptional manuscripts by African American poets. Cave Canem itself is a home for the many voices of African American poetry and is committed to cultivating the artistic and professional growth of African American poets.

The University of Georgia Press has published several prior winners of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize: A GATHERING OF MATTER/A MATTER OF GATHERING by Dawn Lundy Martin(2006), THE LISTENING by Kyle Dargan(2003), and LEAVING SATURN by Major Jackson(2000).

Amphibian Conservation

NPR’s “Living on Earth” recently aired a show on the global crisis of fish and amphibian conservation. If you want to learn more about this important ecological topic, UGA professor of ecology emeritus Whit Gibbons’s KEEPING ALL THE PIECES: PERSPECTIVES ON NATURAL HISTORY AND THE ENVIRONMENT is an engaging look at the beauty of biodiversity and the tragedy of “ecovoids.” The book features a foreword by pioneer of ecosystem ecology Eugene P. Odum and was praised by the Los Angeles Times Book Review for offering “a palatable introduction to ecology for people who don’t understand all the ‘fuss’ over the threat to endangered species.”

For a more focused look at species native to the Southeast, check out our Wormsloe Foundation Nature Book Series. These books, give clear descriptions of dozens of species and hundred of color photos and distribution maps, all with a conservation-oriented approach.
FROGS AND TOADS OF THE SOUTHEAST by Mike Dorcas and Whit Gibbons
SALAMANDERS OF THE SOUTHEAST by Joseph Calvin Mitchell and Whit Gibbons
SNAKES OF THE SOUTHEAST by Whit Gibbons and Mike Dorcas
LIZARDS AND CROCODILIANS OF THE SOUTHEAST by Whit Gibbons, Judy Greene, and Tony Mills
TURTLES OF THE SOUTHEAST by Kurt Buhlmann, Tracey Tuberville, and Whit Gibbons

AMPHIBIANS AND REPTILES OF GEORGIA, edited by John B. Jensen, Carlos D. Camp, Whit Gibbons, and Matt J. Elliott, is more specialized and offers detailed species accounts and nearly 200 range maps showing county-by-county distribution in the state. 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Short Takes: Brims with Lip-Smacking Life

Welcome, new short fiction: The Chicago Tribune on PLEASE COME BACK TO ME: "Like most of the women in the collection, Elizabeth is a beautifully realized character, made real by the compilation of the right detail at precisely the right moment. The stories in Treadway’s second collection are memorable, affecting tales of modern domestic life."

More notice in the Boston Globe, Albany Times-Union and The Rumpus.

THE DANCE BOOTS in the Minneapolis Star Tribune and the St. Paul Pioneer Press; also Indian Country Today and Dark Sky Magazine.

ForeWord Reviews notes: "Grover knows how to end a story--and manages to achieve both circularity and closure in each in every one. This is an impressive feat in and of itself, but for a collection of linked stories like THE DANCE BOOTS, which twist and tie and loop back on one another, the achievement is even more remarkable."

Natasha Trethewey reading in New Orleans yesterday and Biloxi/Gulfport today; coverage on WWNO New Orleans and in the Biloxi Sun-Herald ("Storm's Victims", "Back to Mine," Tuesday's editorial page). Also ForeWord Reviews, Publishers Weekly blog, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and Creative Loafing Atlanta.

SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK in the Houston Chronicle: "The cookbook, which will be published in October, may look plain: it's unfussily spiral bound in the best tradition of community cookbooks; it has no photos. But it brims with lip-smacking life. Anyone who ever hungered for definitive recipes for Collard Greens with Ham Hock Broth, Mississippi Hot Tamales or Persimmon Pudding will appreciate the care that editors Sarah Roahen and John T. Edge and the Southern Foodways Alliance members put into this, the SFA's first published collection of recipes."

CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT, a guide to Civil War sites in Georgia, now available in time for the 150th anniversary of the conflict. Review in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and notice of author signings in Rome, Cedartown and Dalton.

HERE BE MONSTERS by Colin Cheney an Oxford American editors' book pick: "Few writers can traverse such extensive territory as beautifully and seamlessly as he does in this debut collection."

CHARLOTTE NC: THE GLOBAL EVOLUTION OF A NEW SOUTH CITY featured in Ron Stodghill's column in the Charlotte Observer.

CHOICE Reviews for Academic Libraries recommends THE ART OF MANAGING LONGLEAF ("gives readers new eyes with which to see the ecological impacts of human actions"), MARCHING IN STEP ("A must read for any student of the modern South or civil-military relations"), TRANSFORMING SCRIPTURES, THE CULTURE OF PROPERTY, REBECCA HARDING DAVIS'S STORIES OF THE CIVIL WAR ERA and LEGBA'S CROSSING( "A welcome addition to the project of reinserting Africa into black diaspora writing in the Caribbean and the US.")

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Short Takes: Could Be Unstoppable

Natasha Trethewey's BEYOND KATRINA reviewed on NPR's All Things Considered by W. Ralph Eubanks: "What makes Beyond Katrina stand out in the crowded landscape of post-Katrina literature is the raw, personal nature of the story Trethewey tells, as well as the poetic language she uses to tell the tale."

The book was featured this week on PBS NewsHour's Art Beat. An op-ed by Trethewey appeared in the New York Times in conjunction with the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina's landfall on August 29; CNN.com flagged Trethewey as one of Monday's most intriguing people. Other coverage: NPR's Fresh Air, Atlanta Magazine, AJC, WXIA 11 Alive Atlanta, Mobile Press-Register, Jackson Clarion Ledger, Books and Culture.

The final issue of The New Leader includes an in-depth review of Clive Webb's RABBLE ROUSERS by Stephen J. Whitfield: "Webb proceeds with a historian’s invaluable insight that the past should be evoked as though the ending is still uncertain. The reader knows the racist mischief-makers were losers. They themselves did not, nor did the authoritative cohort of their day called 'seasoned observers.' Armed with research in primary sources that is both broad and deep, Rabble Rousers is admirable in its detachment and empathy while telling a stirring tale."

The Eater's Fall cookbook preview features THE SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK: "By sourcing recipes from spiral-bound community cookbooks and then testing and adapting them for modern kitchens, this collection of recipes has the potential to become the standard reference on the topic. Add to that the research power of the Southern Foodways Alliance and its director John T. Edge, and this book could be unstoppable."

JACK LONDON, PHOTOGRAPHER in San Francisco Magazine: "Paired with helpful commentary about London’s life, the 200-plus photos in this book provide fresh insights into an American literary hero."

Booklist on THE DANCE BOOTS: "Grover's collection, for which she won the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction, is simply mesmerizing."

Major Jackson (LEAVING SATURN) featured in the new issue of Poets and Writers Magazine.

Several press titles reviewed in the most recent Journal of Southern History, including MAKING CATFISH BAIT OUT OF GOVERNMENT BOYS: "Claire Strom's insightful and nuanced examination...not only provides the definitive history of the cattle tick in the South but also offers a new perspective on the political history of early-twentieth-century yeoman farmers in the region."

The September issue of CHOICE praises several press books, including REBECCA HARDING DAVIS'S STORIES OF THE CIVIL WAR ERA ("reveals the stark complexities of a nation divided, and rightfully situates Davis's work as a necessary, vital commentary on 19th-century American life and letters"), MARCHING IN STEP ("In spite of being a recent Citadel graduate, Macaulay presents a remarkably objective look at this uniquely isolationist collegiate culture...A must read for any student of the modern South or civil-military relations"), and LEGBA'S CROSSING ("a welcome addition to the project of reinserting Africa into black diaspora writing in the Caribbean and the US.")

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Natasha Trethewey and BEYOND KATRINA on Fresh Air

On NPR's Fresh Air this Wednesday (8/18): Natasha Trethewey talks to Terry Gross about BEYOND KATRINA. For local airtimes, check here; the audio and an excerpt from the book will be posted online once the show airs.

Monday, August 16, 2010

AJC Decatur Book Festival September 3-5

The University of Georgia Press will be at the AJC Decatur Book Festival. You should be there too.

Visit our booth at the intersection of East Ponce de Leon Avenue and Clermont (next to Starbucks Coffee, and near the Old Courthouse) and consider stopping by for these or any of the festival's other marvelous, free events:

Poets Barbara Hamby, David Kirby, Thomas Lux, Kevin Young and David Bottoms discuss and read from Seriously Funny
Saturday, September 4
5:30 pm
First Baptist Decatur Carreker Hall Stage

The most fun poetry reading you have ever attended. Even better if it is the only poetry reading you have ever attended. Everyone's introduction to poetry should be like this.

Angie Mosier, Alan Deutschman and Tore Olsson present Cornbread Nation 5
Sunday, September 5
Cooks Warehouse Stage

SFA Board President Mosier and contributors Deutschman and Olsson talk country ham, the phenomenon that is Your Dekalb Farmer's Market, and the great work of the Southern Foodways Alliance.

Natasha Trethewey will launch Beyond Katrina
Sunday, September 5
1:15 pm
First Baptist Decatur Carreker Hall Stage

Trethewey, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for poetry, reads from her brand new nonfiction book, a very personal profile of the Mississippi Gulf Coast and of the people there whose lives were forever changed by hurricane Katrina.

Additional press authors appearing at the festival:

Rebecca Burns, author of Rage in the Gate City
Sunday, 1:15 pm, Decatur Conference Center Ballroom B

Emory Campbell, contributor to African American Life in the Georgia Lowcountry
Saturday, 3 pm, City Hall Stage

Dana Johnson, winner of the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction for Break Any Woman Down
Sunday, noon, Decatur Library Stage

Ellen Bryant Voigt, author of The Flexible Lyric
Saturday, 10 am, Decatur Conference Center Stage
Sunday, 3:15 pm, Decatur High School

Philip Lee Williams, author of Heart of a Distant Forest
John Lane, author of Circling Home
Sunday, 2:30 pm, Decatur Conference Center Ballroom B

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Short Takes: Plenty of Shotgun Blasts

The September issue of Food and Wine features "Revelatory Caramel Cake" from the SOUTHERN FOODWAYS ALLIANCE COMMUNITY COOKBOOK.

Natasha Trethewey (BEYOND KATRINA) featured on the New Yorker's Book Bench blog. For Trethewey junkies, there's a great interview recently posted on Southern Spaces as part of their Poets in Place project.

Environmental History calls AN EVERGLADES PROVIDENCE, Jack Davis's book on Marjory Stoneman Douglas, a "significant biography of an amazing and influential woman . . . highly recommended reading for every environmental, Florida, literary and gender historian."

"Despite the complicated science involved in tick eradication the work is accessible and timely, especially considering the issues surrounding the proper extent of federal power. The narrative, with plenty of shotgun blasts and dynamite explosions alongside helpful maps, makes this work an engaging and worthwhile read": Southwestern Historical Quarterly on MAKING CATFISH BAIT OUT OF GOVERNMENT BOYS.

Warming up for new Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award winners, out next month: Minnesota Reads on the "powerful descriptive writing" in THE DANCE BOOTS and Caroline Leavitt on the "knockout" collection PLEASE COME BACK TO ME.

(alongside books by Thomas Keller and Anthony Bourdain)in the food issue of the Atlantan (page 24-25).

Law and History Review on FATHERS OF CONSCIENCE: "...the inheritance rights of enslaved women and children have received little sustained attention. This neglect is remedied by this fine work."

Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award winners announced

Judging for this year's Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award is at last complete. Congratulations to the winning authors: Amina Gautier of Chicago, IL for her manuscript "At Risk" and Melinda Moustakis of Kalamazoo, MI for "Bear Down, Bear North." Both collections will be published by the University of Georgia Press and should be available next fall.

Meanwhile, the winning collections from last year's competition, THE DANCE BOOTS by Linda Legarde Grover and PLEASE COME BACK TO ME by Jessica Treadway, are very near release and will be available by September 15.

The award exists to help readers discover wonderful new writers and call attention to the short story as a worthy genre; it has led to the publication of more than fifty short story collections since 1983.

The judges named a runner up in this year's competition, E. J. Levy of Washington, DC. Congratulations also to this year’s finalists: L. Annette Binder of Los Angeles, CA; Charles Blackburn, Jr. of Raleigh, NC; William H. Coles of Salt Lake City, UT; Justin Courter of Sunnyside, NY; Valerie Fioravanti of Sacramento, CA; Natalie Harris of Waterville, ME; Nick Healy of Mankato, MN; Jeff P. Jones of Moscow, ID; Christiana Louisa Langenberg of Huxley, IA; Kelly Luce of Santa Cruz, CA; Michael McGuire of La Manzanilla de la Paz, Jalisco, Mexico; Robert McKean of Newton, MA; Janna McMahan of Columbia, SC; Nicholas Montemarano of Lancaster, PA; Maryanne O’Hara of Ashland, MA; Nicole Louise Reid of Newburgh, IN; Richard Sonnenmoser of Maryville, MO; Carol Test of Phoenix, AZ; Paul Vidich of New York, NY; Anthony Wallace of Brookline, MA; and Gregory Wolos of Alplaus, NY.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Short Takes: Avoid Newt Eating

ForeWord Reviews on JOHN OLIVER KILLENS: "Gilyard’s affection and admiration for his subject shine through his words without falling into hero worship. This book certainly deserves consideration for college Black Studies courses, as well as a place in any African American Studies library collection."

New AWP Creative Nonfiction Award winner Danielle Deulen is also the winner of the University of Arkansas Press Miller Williams Arkansas Poetry Prize; profile in Salt Lake Tribune.

Monroe News Star editorial reflects on the selection of LOUISIANA WOMEN as the summer reading book for the community: "And what a book it is."

The forthcoming CROSSROADS OF CONFLICT, a guide to the Civil War sites of Georgia, mentioned in the Athens Banner-Herald.

The Aiken Standard announces SALAMANDERS OF THE SOUTHEAST: ‎"None of the Southeastern species of salamanders are harmful to humans, Gibbons said, though the newt would be poisonous in the unlikely event someone ate one."

The Baton Rouge Advocate thanks the late Charles East for bringing to light THE CIVIL WAR DIARY OF SARAH MORGAN; an exhibit on Morgan has opened at the Old State Capitol.

"Marsh provides a readable and compelling work on Georgia’s formative years and effectively uses family and gender to help explain the colony’s transformation into a southern stronghold": GEORGIA'S FRONTIER WOMEN reviewed on H-Net.

JOHN PORTMAN: ART AND ARCHITECTURE exhibit, curated in Atlanta, now on display in Shanghai, where John Portman and Associates has several completed and current projects.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Short Takes

Publishers Weekly reviews THE DANCE BOOTS by Linda LeGarde Grover, noting the story collection's "bright and determined vitality." The book, winner of the Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction Award, is forthcoming in September.

ForeWord Reviews includes BLACK NATURE and the University of Georgia Press in a feature on finding the best new poetry titles: "Dungy’s selection of poems is an invitation to read far beyond these pages... The work of ninety-three poets, from Phillis Wheatley to Patricia Smith, Richard Wright to Tim Seibles, shows a range of concerns that will broaden our understanding of what constitutes nature poetry. This is an important addition to a library or personal collection."

The director David Lynch tweets that Anna Journey's IF BIRDS GATHER YOUR HAIR FOR NESTING is "magical".

Allen Matusow (THE UNRAVELING OF AMERICA) asked to comment by the Houston Chronicle on the year 1964 in anticipation of the new season of Mad Men opening Sunday.

LEGACY: A Journal of American Women Writers included MARGARET FULLER: WANDERING PILGRIM in an essay review of recent biographies of Fuller: "At its finest moments, Murray's biography does an excellent job balancing Fuller's life and writing, illustrating that the personal is the political."

Now available:
Edited by Charles T. Bryson and Michael S. DeFelice
Principal photography by Arlyn W. Evans and Michael S. DeFelice

Editors Bryson and DeFelice follow up their well-received guide to the weeds of the south with a volume covering potentially problematic plants from northern Kentucy to southern Manitoba and Ontario, and from eastern South Dakota to Ohio. A particularly useful feature of both guides is the use of up to four color photographs to show the plant in seed, seedling, plant and flowering stages.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Short Takes

Chesapeake Quarterly has an engaging review of the award-winning THE OYSTER QUESTION: "Keiner, in sharp detail, lays out the tangled history of Maryland's oysters — not only the leasing controversy, but the hunt for them, the struggle to manage them, the battle to bring them back. . . . Keiner's book is well researched, well thought out, and well written. Her attention to detail is impressive. Every library with marine-related holdings should have a copy. Indeed, for anyone wanting the deep backstory on Maryland's colorful oyster past, The Oyster Question is itself something of a treasure."

The winner of the 2010 Associated Writers & Writing Programs Creative Nonfiction Award is Danielle Cadena Deulen for her manuscript "The Riots." The award includes publication by the University of Georgia Press.

JURY DISCRIMINATION included on the Chronicle of Higher Education's New Scholarly Books list.

THE BIBLE ACCORDING TO MARK TWAIN makes the Essential Freethought Library.

ISLE reviews Sharon White's VANISHED GARDENS, calling it "a four-dimensional urban ecology" and noting, "Her spare yet lyrical sentences accumulate a Proustian density in which every fragrance, every blossom, every steamy shade of green, every change of temperature and cycle of season enriches the compost of history, culture, botany, and memoir."

Eighteenth Century Studies
calls Julie Anne Sweet's NEGOTIATING FOR GEORGIA, on the relationship between early Georgia colonists and Lower Creek Indians, "the most focused study yet on this intercultural engagement," adding that "the strength of Sweet's monograph is in the impressive scope and depth of her research and the astonishing level of detail and complex analysis it allows her to provide."

Upcoming events:
August 12-14, 2010
Scribblers' Retreat Writers' Conference, St. Simon's Island
Author Karen Salyer McElmurray (SURRENDERED CHILD and STRANGE BIRDS IN THE TREE OF HEAVEN)is a featured speaker.

Salamanders of the Southeast completes a series

SALAMANDERS OF THE SOUTHEAST, the fifth and final volume of our well-regarded series of guides to the herpetofauna of the southeastern U.S., is now available.

While salamanders conceal themselves well and are seldom seen, in the southeast they far outnumber any other terrestrial vertebrate groups in species and often in population sizes. This book showcases these beautiful examples of “hidden biodiversity” and demonstrates their role as an important component of the ecology of the region.

Written by ecologists Joe Mitchell and Whit Gibbons, SALAMANDERS OF THE SOUTHEAST features 102 species, each illustrated with color photographs of typical adults and variations. Species accounts include notes on habitat, similar species, behavior, reproduction, predators and conservation status. Each account is accompanied by distribution maps for both the southeast and the U.S. as a whole, demonstrating how many species are unique to the region or in some cases to a single mountain or a few counties within the region.

The book covers Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky, a region especially rich in salamanders and also a focal point of concern for conservation of amphibian habitat.

The first book in the series, SNAKES OF THE SOUTHEAST, was published in 2005. Subsequent volumes presented accessible, authoritative information on:


(click here for a companion collection of frog and toad calls on YouTube)


Herpetological Review called books in the series “exquisite” and noted, “All are of uniformly high quality, clearly written, with an attractive layout. Each has solid introductory information, detailed species descriptions, excellent range maps and color photographs, line drawings showing defining features, and a strong conservation message.”

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Short Takes

Lori Ostlund (THE BIGNESS OF THE WORLD) makes the Dzanc Books alternate "20-under-40" fiction list, as reported by Publishers Weekly; the list includes authors who publish with a wider range of small and independent presses than those included in the New Yorker's recent "20 under 40" issue. Also, they're not all under 40 (although there are 20 of them).

CORNBREAD NATION 5 enthusiastically reviewed in the inaugural issue of the new online food mag The Zenchilada (see page 105).

Bookslut on Colin Cheney's debut collection HERE BE MONSTERS. His poem "Lord God Bird," which originally appeared in Notre Dame Review, has just been awarded a Pushcart Prize. Also a new audio interview at Scattered Rhymes, with links to Darwin's notebooks and other topics Cheney mentions.

Encyclopedia Britannica's Advocacy for Animals site recommends VISIONS OF CALIBAN: ON CHIMPANZEES AND PEOPLE by Dale Peterson and Jane Goodall as great summer reading for animal lovers, and notes that it is "approaching the status of a classic."

TENNESSEE WOMEN reviewed on H-Net: "Suffice it to say, there is not a ringer among the eighteen essays. Each is informed by the most recent scholarship in the fields of American women's history, southern history, and the history of Tennessee." From a highlight in the current issue of Mississippi magazine: "In 34 articles, the second volume of MISSISSIPPI WOMEN chronicles the interesting, intriguing, and complicated lives of past Mississippi women."

H-Southern Industry reviews Marko Maunula's GUTEN TAG, Y'ALL.

Now available:
Edited by William Graves and Heather A. Smith
This collection of accessible essays by geographers, historians, and architects, examines rapid change in Charlotte from several unusual and interesting angles. Contributors look at the banking industry and the construction of a global finance center, but also NASCAR, the reuse of textile mills, gentrification in uptown, and immigrant corridors on South Boulevard and the East Side, trying to clarify what kind of place Charlotte is and how it got to be that way.

National Book Award finalists to be announced at Flannery O'Connor childhood home

This October, the National Book Foundation will announce the 2010 finalists for the National Book Award at the Flannery O'Connor Childhood Home in Savannah, Georgia. (The foundation has not yet announced who will read the list of 20 finalists in fiction, nonfiction, poetry and young people's literature.)

In past years, John Grisham has made the announcement from William Faulkner's home in Oxford, Mississippi. Lawrence Ferlinghetti has named the finalists from City Lights Book Shop in San Francisco, Garrison Keillor from the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota, and Camille Paglia from the Library Company of Philadelphia.

The foundation's choice of Flannery O'Connor's childhood home (included in A LITERARY GUIDE TO FLANNERY O'CONNOR'S GEORGIA) comes in the wake of last summer's campaign to determine the Best of the National Book Award winners in fiction, with all 77 past winners in the running. Public vote selected Flannery O'Connor's Complete Stories, which won the National Book Award in 1972 -- eight years after her death -- beating out finalists John Updike and Walker Percy.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Short Takes

Dyana Furmansky's ROSALIE EDGE, HAWK OF MERCY has won the Colorado Book Award for Biography.

Urban Affairs Review includes BLOOMBERG'S NEW YORK by Julian Brash (forthcoming in February) in a roundup of books assessing recent change in New York City: "To some observers, however, including most of the above authors— Moody, Greenberg, Angotti, and Brash— Bloomberg’s mayoralty marked the culmination of a disturbing trend that began with the fiscal crisis. For them, the city is becoming a less hospitable place for people in need, as power shifts to economic elites who divide public benefits less equitably."

Emerson Society Papers
reviews PASSIONS FOR NATURE: "Johnson's interdisciplinary study breaks new and compelling ground in its establishment of a dialogue between writers, naturalists, painters, and landscape designers on the subject of nature and its role in American life."

Choice recommends THE OYSTER QUESTION ("will interest those concerned with preserving Chesapeake Bay and its natural resources, and environmental historians who focus on state resources") and GLASS CEILINGS AND 100-HOUR COUPLES ("this provocative book raises many questions but does not stoop to providing pat answers about how couples should manage the work-family balance.")

Western American Literature reviews JACK LONDON'S RACIAL LIVES: "London shifted or adjusted his racial attitudes over time as the result of his travels, and Reesman smartly and systematically charts this trajectory."

Florida Forum, magazine of the Florida Humanities Council, profiles Jack Davis, winner of the Florida Book Award for nonfiction for his biography of Marjory Stoneman Douglas, AN EVERGLADES PROVIDENCE.

Upcoming events:
Wednesday, July 14
2-4 pm
Hudson Institute conference center
Washington, DC
also streamed live: www.hudson.org/WatchLive

Charles Horner (RISING CHINA) and Christopher Ford (The Mind of Empire) in a panel discussion on the role of China's past in understanding its future strategies; with Ashley Tellis (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace) and Arthur Waldron (University of Pennsylvania)

Now available:
Jeannette Eileen Jones

While acknowledging the current of American thought that saw Africa as a "dark continent," Jones examines a countertrend in late nineteenth and early twentieth century cultural and intellectual history, in which early environmentalists, filmmakers, New Negro political thinkers and others turned to Africa as an important source of knowledge and enlightenment.

Christopher Waldrep

Waldrep explores the remarkable 1906 case in which white Mississippi lawyer Dabney Marshall (carrying out a plan conceived by black Mississippi lawyer Willis Mollison) successfully demanded the racial integration of juries in Mississippi, with particular focus on the role of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case and the consequesnces of its narrow reading of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Short Takes

The New York Times Sunday Magazine mentions REAL PHONIES as an excellent tool for understanding the reality TV show "The Bachelor," where contestants must profess that they are on the show to 'find love' rather than to promote themselves: "This demand on the players brings to mind Abigail Cheever’s fascinating new book, Real Phonies, about the American drama of personal authenticity."

Ron Slate reviews SERIOUSLY FUNNY: "A poet can accept any criticism except the charge that his or her verse is humorless...say he/she has no sense of humor and the poet will become violent or morose."

In the new American Historical Review: THE UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT ("Given current US unemployment rates, the story of this book could speak to the growing number of organizers and policy makers looking to again harness the grassroots.") and HERE, GEORGE WASHINGTON WAS BORN ("A book that should receive serious consideration from all historians interested in the presentation and interpretation of the past. Bruggeman's study adds an important piece of the puzzle to our understanding of public history and the ways in which the past has been presented to general audiences during the last eighty years.")

H-Net Reviews (H-1960s) on LIBERALISM, BLACK POWER, AND THE MAKING OF AMERICAN POLITICS, 1965-1980: "Fergus offers a compelling read that poses many provocative questions."

Matthew H. Bernstein's SCREENING A LYNCHING was named a finalist for the Richard Wall Memorial Award from the Theater Library Association, which honors a book of exceptional scholarship in the field of recorded performance.

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune gives an early teaser for new Flannery O'Connor Short Fiction award winner Linda LeGarde Grover. Her winning collection, THE DANCE BOOTS, will be out in September.

The blog Canopy Roads of South Georgia enthusiastic about THE ART OF MANAGING LONGLEAF.

The Tuscaloosa News on DIXIE EMPORIUM.

Suite 101 article on GLASS CEILINGS AND 100-HOUR COUPLES.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Short Takes

Keith Gilyard discussed JOHN OLIVER KILLENS on GPB's Cover to Cover this past Sunday. The interview, with historian Stan Deaton, should be posted soon with Cover to Cover's podcasts.

From Hawk Migration Notes on Dyana Furmansky's ROSALIE EDGE, HAWK OF MERCY: "I encourage anyone who cares about our incredible planet to read this eye-opening and well-written book." Following Furmansky's talk on Edge at their annual meeting, the Delaware Valley Ornithological Society has renamed their Conservation Award the Rosalie Edge Conservation Award.

Video is now available from the BLACK NATURE panel discussion held at the Berkeley Institute for the Environment this spring. The discussion includes poets C.S. Giscombe, Camille Dungy, Evie Shockley, Robert Hass, Ed Roberson, Al Young, Carl Phillips, Carolyn Finney and Harryette Mullen.

Journal of the History of Biology on THE OYSTER QUESTION: "An exciting contribution to both the history of science and environmental history. In this case study of the Maryland oyster fishery, Keiner does an excellent job of combining these two historical perspectives to shed new light on the depths of a problem that has challenged all of the American oyster states since the early nineteenth century. Through her analysis, Keiner effectively reframes how environmental historians have analyzed histories of common resources and provides a working model for integrating historical and ecological information to bridge the histories of science and environmental history."

Upcoming area events:
Saturday, June 12 @ 2:00 PM
Atlanta History Center
John Burrison will speak on FROM MUD TO JUG and the living tradition of folk pottery in north Georgia.