Meet the Editors

Publisher and Executive Editor Philip K. Jason is the author or editor of several books. From 1973 to 2001, he taught English and Creative Writing at United States Naval Academy. Allen Mendenhall is associate dean at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. Donna Meredith is the widely acclaimed author of several books, and a distinguished journalist and reviewer. RIGHT: Photographs by VanessaK Photography, LLC.

Welcome!

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.  

April Read of the Month: “To the Bones,” by Valerie Nieman

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Edgy suspense, Scottish paranormal legend, and a beautiful river transformed into a wicked orange brew—these ingredients in the skilled hands of journalist Valerie Nieman create a whip-smart novel, To the Bones (West Virginia University Press, 2019). The story presents a classic hero’s quest in which an ordinary person discovers new strengths […]

Allen Mendenhall Interviews Joanne Kukanza Easley, Author of “Sweet Jane”

AM:  I’m glad our mutual friend, Johnnie Bernhard, connected us, Joanne.  Johnnie has written for Southern Literary Review, and we’ve reviewed her books.  How did y’all meet? JKE: Thanks for your time, Allen. I attended a book signing for Johnnie’s second novel How We Came to Be at a local library in the Texas Hill […]

“Bells for Eli,” by Susan Beckham Zurenda

Reviewed by Philip K. Jason Coming of age narratives, particularly about young women, have long been a staple in the literature of the American South. Zurenda’s marvelous book is a major achievement in this genre. It is deeply moving, troubling, and gloriously poetic. It brings to life small town South Carolina during the 1960s and […]

“John Michael Cummings: a Writer on a Mission,” Profile by John Riddle

Profile by John Riddle  Many people dream of becoming a writer, but very few take the leap of faith and make it happen. Make no mistake about it: writing is hard, and for many people, staring at a blank piece of paper or a blank computer screen is enough to scare you to death. But […]

John Riddle

John Riddle is the author of 34 books. His byline has appeared in major publications all across the United States, and he has written articles for over 200 websites. Since 1996 he has been working out of his home office as a full time freelance writer, author, ghostwriter and donut eater.

March Read of the Month: “A Spy in the House of Anais Nin,” by Kim Krizan

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Confession: I have only read one volume by Anais Nin. That was decades ago when I was in college and I don’t recall the title. The stories provoked a wide range of emotions. I was alternately shocked, titillated, appalled, and aroused by the content. Although I admired Nin’s storytelling ability and […]

Allen Mendenhall Interviews Melissa Fischer, Author of “The Advocacy”

AM:  I’m glad we have this opportunity, Melissa, to talk about your profound new book, The Advocacy, which is set in 1992 in Obuasi, Ghana, a mining town known for its gold. You lived in this town in 1992 and remained there for a few years while you worked for the Peace Corps. How did […]

February Read of the Month: “Midnight at the Tuscany Hotel,” by James Markert

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro Lush, mystical, and complex, Midnight at the Tuscany Hotel by Kentucky author James Markert is a stunning book. It begins with a foundling child abandoned at an orphanage in Florence, Italy, 1866, and ends on a California cliff in modern times—but oh what a journey the author takes his readers […]