Meet the Editors

Allen Mendenhall is publisher and editor-in-chief. Donna Meredith, Charley Hively, and Claire Hamner Matturro serve as associate editors. 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.

“Even As We Breathe,” by Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Infused with Cherokee myth and the history of North Carolina’s famous Grove Park Inn, Even As We Breathe is a stunningly beautiful coming-of-age novel. With its publication, Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle joins Louise Erdrich, Sherman Alexie, N. Scott Momaday, and Leslie Marmon Silko as a new and important voice in Native American […]

“Gone This Long,” by Jeffrey Alfier

Reviewed by Bruce Craven Gone This Long: Southern Poems, a new chapbook by prolific poet Jeffery Alfier, captures the intense beauty of a natural land impacted by the hopes, joys, and sorrows of humanity, Alfier, who holds an MA in Humanities from California State University at Dominguez Hills and is an Air Force veteran, lives […]

John Shelton Reed on “Lousy With Charm”

Essay by John Shelton Reed On a steamy New Orleans evening in August 1937 a crowd gathered in the air-conditioned comfort of the Group Theatre, which had been founded a couple of years earlier to foster “experiment in all branches of the theatre arts.” They were there by invitation, for the world premiere of Lousy […]

“The Other Morgans,” by Carter Taylor Seaton

Reviewed by Donna Meredith When readers first encounter AJ Porter in Carter Taylor Seaton’s novel The Other Morgans, they would be forgiven for judging AJ with a critical eye. The college dropout lives in a rural region of southern West Virginia, can’t pay her taxes, and uses grammar certain to make every teacher flinch. At […]

“The Summer House,” by Lauren Denton

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro On one hand, The Summer House (Thomas Nelson, June 2020) has a simple plot—an unlikely friendship between two women sparks a second chance at happiness for both. On the other the hand, the plot is as complex as human emotions. And that is where the richness of The Summer House […]

Southern Literary Review interviews North Carolina author Annette Clapsaddle

“A Place So Deep Inside America It Can’t Be Seen,” by Kari Gunter-Seymour

Reviewed by Donna Meredith One minute it soars. The next it dives. It drives tacks into your heart and then warms your feet like a cozy pair of socks. The language and imagery in Kari Gunter-Seymour’s poetry collection, A Place So Deep Inside America It Can’t Be Seen, is all that we expect from a […]

October Read of the Month: “Second Blooming,” edited by Susan Cushman

Reviewed by Robert Kostuck “I was given a second chance, as were others in this anthology. Some of their lives were changed by trauma, some by incarceration, some by the loss of a loved one, some by marriages gone wrong or by new careers gone right.” —Susan Cushman “The explorer who will not come back […]