Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Adding an author to my list

When I wrote about meeting authors, I missed one (maybe more).  Susan Gregg Gilmore's post about visiting Southern bookstores mentioned Janisse Ray, reminding me to go back to my Author Sightings post and add her name.  I met her about a decade ago when she was in Chattanooga for the Conference of Southern Literature.  I had read and loved her book Ecology of a Cracker Childhood (1999) about how a childhood spent in rural isolation and steeped in religious fundamentalism grew into a passion to save the almost vanished longleaf pine ecosystem that once covered the South. This book, her first, garnered lots of awards:
Southeastern Booksellers Award 1999
American Book Award 2000
Southern Environmental Law Center 2000 Award for Outstanding Writing
Southern Book Critics Circle Award 2000
Janisse Ray has published three more books since then.  Wild Card Quilt: Taking a Chance on Home (2003) is about coming home:  "Seventeen years after she'd left home 'for good,' Janisse Ray pointed her truck away from Montana and back to the small southern town where she was born."  Pinhook: Finding Wholeness in a Fragmented Land (2005) explores southern Georgia's Pinhook Swamp, a vital watershed that links the Okefenokee and the Osceola National Forest.  A House of Branches (2010) is a book of "poems informed by the author's long-standing interest in the wilderness and nature."

I have put Wild Card Quilt on hold at my library.  Have you read any of Janisse Ray's books?


Susan Tidwell said...

I am looking forward to reading more of her writing since I am enjoying 'Wild Card Quilt' so much!

Bonnie Jacobs said...

In that case, Susan, I recommend Ecology of a Cracker Childhood to you. I think you'd like it.

Susan Tidwell said...

Ok, I am loving this author! I have finished Wild Card and will be reading more of her work soon. Thank you Bonnie for the recommendation!

Bonnie Jacobs said...

I'm only halfway through the book because I'm so busy with the mechanics of teaching three days a week at the college. It seemed much less stressful when I was teaching ONE three-hour class on Thursday evenings, rather than TWO one-hour classes THREE times a week. Since these are WRITING classes, there is also more to grade now.

Though my time for reading books is limited, I'm enjoying this one.