John Branscum’s (English) book Red Holler netted a starred review from Library Journal and a staff pick review from Forward Review, as well as winning the Linda Bruckheimer Series in Kentucky Literature award.
In a Appalachian literary anthology that writer Dorothy Allison calls “a barn-burner” and which the Library Journal has given a starred review, the reader is taken beyond the stereotypes of many previous Appalachian literary anthologies. Editors John Branscum and Wayne Thomas have assembled a collection spanning 10 years and communities in locales ranging from Mississippi to New York, placing fresh new voices alongside widely known and celebrated authors.
Drawing on Appalachian literature’s roots in Native American myth, African American urban legend, and European folk culture, and embracing Appalachian urban fiction, the Southern Gothic, gritty no-holds-barred realism, and magical realism, the stories and poems of Red Holler elegantly cohere to perfectly depict what makes Appalachia so fascinating: its irreverent and outlaw challenges to mainstream notions of propriety and convention.
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