The Southern Literary Review celebrates southern authors and their contributions to American literature. We feature the classic writers who have defined southern literature, and we highlight emerging authors through interviews, profiles, and book reviews. In an effort to back independent bookstores and to encourage creativity in the publishing world, SLR is an IndieBound supporter.
Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl Mark Beaver’s Suburban Gospel is one more memoir of an adolescent wandering toward adulthood, a Bible Belt Baptist southern version of Roth’s Portnoy but without the gnawing sense of psychological guilt expiated on the analyst’s couch. It is, on the other hand, exuberantly “guilt-edged,” the saga of a young man […]
Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl I’m guessing it would have been 1976, graduate school, and a seminar in the American 1930s, history, literature, political thought, economics, and culture, the latter the more encompassing word in that list. I thought to make an argument that “nascent” to American Literature during that decade was the emergence of […]
Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro Following the success of his powerful debut legal thriller, The Professor (Thomas & Mercer 2015), Bailey offers a second, stunning story in the series. In his novel Between Black and White (Thomas & Mercer March 2016), Bailey establishes beyond doubt that he is an author to be read and reckoned […]
Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl The five stories in Elizabeth Genovise’s A Different Harbor mark her publishing debut and are impressive for their clear-eyed compassion. The stories are beautifully intimate and intensely direct, poignant journeys into the burl-wood heart of what it means to be not only humanly complicit but also safe from strife while […]
Reviewed by Donna Meredith With his third novel, The Gospel of the Twin, Ron Cooper delves into very different and far more controversial territory than his earlier fiction, Hume’s Fork and Purple Jesus. Those were satirical in tone, peopled with wacky characters. In The Gospel of the Twin, Judas Didymos Thomas, now eighty years old, […]
Reviewed by Philip K. Jason Like its predecessor Liar’s Bench, GodPretty in the Tobacco Field is a powerful coming-of-age story complicated by lingering racial prejudice. The town of Nameless, Kentucky is a place where everyone suffers under the heel of grinding poverty, poor education, and images of a ruthless, punishing God from whom family elders […]
Reviewed by Katie DePoppe This third installment to Coffey’s series (which can be read in any order) once again pulls the reader into the eerie, ethereal terrain of Mattingly, Virginia. A coming-of-age tale at its most simplistic and a dark-night-of-the-soul journey at its core, the novel, although only loosely grounded in Christian orthodoxy, is unapologetically […]