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Books & Authors

Southern Gothic Literature

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

A lawyer's advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel—a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with rich humor and unswerving honesty the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930's. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence, and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina and quiet heroism of one man's struggle for justice—but the weight of history will only tolerate so much.

 Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin

A powerful and resonant novel from Tom Franklin--critically acclaimed author of "Smonk" and  "Hell at the Breech"--"Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter" tells the riveting story of two boyhood friends, torn apart by circumstance, who are brought together again by a terrible crime in a small Mississippi town.

 Beloved by Toni Morrison

It is the story--set in post-Civil War Ohio--of Sethe, an escaped slave who has risked death in order to wrench herself from a living death; who has lost a husband and buried a child; who has borne the unthinkable and not gone mad: a woman of "iron eyes and backbone to match." Sethe lives in a small house on the edge of town with her daughter, Denver, her mother-in-law, Baby Suggs, and a disturbing, mesmerizing intruder who calls herself Beloved.

 Miss Jane by Brad Watson

Inspired by the true story of his own great-aunt, he explores the life of Miss Jane Chisolm, born in rural, early-twentieth-century Mississippi with a genital birth defect that would stand in the way of the central "uses" for a woman in that time and place--namely, sex and marriage. From the country doctor who adopts Jane to the hard tactile labor of farm life, from the highly erotic world of nature around her to the boy who loved but was forced to leave her, the world of Miss Jane Chisolm is anything but barren.

 Child Of God by Cormac McCarthy

Falsely accused of rape, Lester Ballard is released from jail, and a trip to the dry-goods store, an errand to the blacksmith, and other incidents are transformed into scenes of the comic and the grotesque.

 A Good Man Is Hard To Find And Other Stories by Flannery O’Connor

The collection that established O'Connor's reputation as one of the American masters of the short story. The volume contains the celebrated title story, a tale of the murderous fugitive The Misfit, as well as "The Displaced Person" and eight other stories.

 Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel by Jesmyn Ward

Living with his grandparents and toddler sister on a Gulf Coast farm, Jojo navigates the challenges of his tormented mother's addictions and his grandmother's terminal cancer before the release of his father from prison prompts a road trip of danger and hope.

 The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

At its center is the deaf-mute John Singer, who becomes the confidant for various types of misfits in a Georgia mill town during the 1930's. Each one yearns for escape from small town life. When Singer's mute companion goes insane, Singer moves into the Kelly house, where Mick Kelly, the book's heroin, finds solace in her music.

 As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner

"As I Lay Dying" is Faulkner's harrowing account of the Bundren family's odyssey across the Mississippi countryside to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Narrated in turn by each of the family members--including Addie herself--as well as others the novel ranges in mood, from dark comedy to the deepest pathos. Considered one of the most influential novels in American fiction in structure, style, and drama, "As I Lay Dying" is a true 20th-century classic.

 

 

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