“Brutal Silence,” by Margaret Dardess

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Hidden in plain sight, human trafficking occurs in American neighborhoods where few expect that such a crime could exist, in the world of shopping malls and classy restaurants. But someone—a banker, a motel owner, a health care worker—surely suspects what is happening and fails to speak out. Margaret Dardess gives voice […]

“This Vast Southern Empire,” by Matthew Karp

Reviewed by Daniel James Sundahl Few today would recognize the name George Washington Lafayette Bickley. He lived an adventurous life which included practicing medicine in Virginia although there’s evidence he lacked the credentials. His larger interests were Southern; in the late 1850s he traveled throughout the South promoting a militia campaign to seize Mexico. A […]

May Read of the Month: “A Part of Me,” by Julia Nunnally Duncan

Reviewed by Joseph Bathanti Julia Nunnally Duncan’s incantatory new volume of poems, A Part of Me, is the lyric inventory of all that has passed before the poet’s eye, committed deftly to the page, a litany of praise-songs and elegies. If Memory (Mnemosyne, the Greek Titan Goddess) is indeed the Mother of the Muses, then Duncan […]

“The Tears of Dark Water,” by Corban Addison

Reviewed by Johnnie Bernhard The mastery of Corban Addison’s The Tears of Dark Water lies in its multi-tiered plot and timely social commentary, as well as its soulful examination of the human condition.  The external conflict of a father and son held hostage by Somali pirates resonates with the internal conflicts of a troubled marriage, […]

April Read of the Month: “Oh, Florida: How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country,” by Craig Pittman

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro With Oh, Florida, a book that defies easy categorization, award-winning journalist Craig Pittman has penned a definite winner. Oh, Florida is nonfiction, though its legends and lore add a devilish charm and a wicked-fast pace more commonly associated with Florida thrillers and their motifs of death, crime and gore; their […]

“The Promise of Jesse Woods,” by Chris Fabry

Reviewed by John S. Maguire Chris Fabry’s The Promise of Jesse Woods is a novel that deals with race, social inequality and the age-old story of star-crossed lovers. It is a complex read, weaving in and out of two time periods, but somehow Fabry makes it all work, twisting the usual response to these subjects […]

“Historic Alabama Courthouses: A Century of Their Images and Stories,” by Delos Hughes

Reviewed by Julia Jordan Weller If the walls of courthouses could talk, they would whisper the experiences of those who worked, litigated, and governed over the last 150 years or more.  Some courtrooms have evolved from open air forums, such as those held in Wedowee until 1836, to some of the grand domed buildings that […]

Julia Jordan Weller

Julia Jordan Weller, a native of Montgomery, Alabama, attended Hollins University and obtained her undergraduate degree from the University of Alabama in 1985. She obtained her Juris Doctorate from Cumberland School of Law in 1988. Since that time, she has served as a law clerk to the Honorable Joel F. Dubina on both the United […]