Archive for 2007

Gov. John Patterson Subject of New Book, Documentary

Monday, April 16th, 2007 by Suzanne La Rosa

Former Alabama Governor John Patterson is subject of a forthcoming biography by historian Warren Trest (Wings of Denial), called Nobody But the People, to be published by NewSouth Books in 2008. Patterson is also the subject of a new documentary, called In the Wake of the Assassins. The film by Robert Clem will be shown in Montgomery on May 21 at 4pm at Alabama Department of Archives and History; a reception follows. For more information, call the Friends of the Alabama Archives at 334-242-4363.

Rev. H. K. Matthews Honored in Pensacola

Thursday, April 12th, 2007 by Mary Katherine

“The honor and recognition granted the¬†Rev. H. K. Matthews [in February] for his courageous contributions as a civil rights leader in Pensacola were long overdue,” says the Pensacola News Journal.¬†

Rev. H. K. MatthewsMatthews, author of Victory After the Fall: Memories of a Civil Rights Activist, was recognized last month during the H. K. Matthews Commemorative Event‚ÄîA Salute to Black History Month at Pensacola Junior College.¬† Matthews “was honored for a lifetime of work Monday evening before an audience of some of Pensacola’s most prominent citizens,” writes the University of West Florida newspaper, The Voyager.¬†Hosts of civic leaders, including Governor Charlie Crist, civil rights activist Dick Gregory, and former congressman Joe Scarborough, each took a turn at the podium to offer praise, thanks, and to tell stories about Matthews many contributions to the area.¬†

Matthews also had the chance to offer his own thanks to the community. 

From The Voyager:

In a steady tone, forceful for a man of his years, he addressed the crowd.

“Some people don’t like to be recognized,” Matthews said. “I’ve never asked anyone to make me a leader. If I do that, I am, to a degree, unfaithful to commitment. I don’t have to ask anyone to recognize me.”¬†

Ending his speech for the evening, Matthews, who had been eliciting complimentary sounds of agreement and head-nods from the gathered well-wishers, took on a persona rarely seen since the days of Dr. King, speaking in an urgent tone that sunk into the hearts of all those present. Impressing every word into the audience, he summed up the troubles from his past, and his optimism for the future.

“I’ve had some hills to climb. I’ve had some dreary days and sleepless nights,” he said. “But when I look around and think things over, I see that all of our good days outweigh our bad days. I can’t complain.”

Rev. Matthew’s book, Victory After the Fall¬†is a first-person narrative of the challenges and opportunities black citizens encountered before, during, and after the 1960s struggle for racial equality. Victory After the Fall provides a fascinating journey into the civil rights battlegrounds of northwest Florida and beyond, but it is also a story of moral courage and personal redemption.

Victory After the Fall is available directly from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite local or online book retailer. Victory After the Fall is also available as an Adobe Reader ebook.

Like a Tree Author Discusses Dream of Novel-Writing

Wednesday, April 11th, 2007 by Brian Seidman

Calvin Kytle, author of the forthcoming NewSouth book Like a Tree, discussed his dream of writing a novel earlier this month with North Carolina’s Herald Sun newspaper. As Kytle explains in the article, “Off and on all my life I wanted to do some fiction. I decided I would write a novel when I retired. I am very pleased with it, and I hope it will be well reviewed. I just did it to get something out of my system.” From the article:

[Like a Tree] focuses on a white, middle class, protestant Atlanta family during the Great Depression and centers around the main character, Douglas Krueger, as he battles his own depression. The novel details his road to recovery, which is similar to that of the country.

“I call it a functional Southern family,” Kytle said. “I got sort of weary of the dysfunctional Southern families written about.”

His novel also explores the small cells of white liberals during this time period who were working toward integration and reform in Georgia.

“I don’t think that group has been given much attention,” Kytle said. “Especially in Georgia, they were quite influential, so I wanted to write about those people. At that time, you might lose your job if you were white and someone saw you shake hands with a black person. I wanted to say something about that small minority of white liberals who were working sort of undercover.”

Much of the book comes from Kytle’s own experiences growing up in South Carolina and Georgia during the Depression. Although the book is not autobiographical, Kytle said he drew on memories from his childhood to create the plot and to reference many of the significant artifacts of that time period he describes in the book.

“The period in my life that I know best is the 1930s,” he said. “My adolescence is the period that I am most confident writing about. I did rely on my memory of that period a lot.”

Kytle’s wife of more than 60 years, Elizabeth, is also an author. … In addition to her moral support, Elizabeth Kytle’s main contribution to the book was its title, “Like A Tree.” It refers to an old traditional hymn, “We Shall Not Be Moved,” used during the Civil Rights Movement. The chorus of the hymn is “Just like a tree that’s standing by the water/We shall not be moved.”

Read the full article at the Herald Sun website.

To learn more about Like a Tree, visit

John Pritchard Reads Yazoo Blues at Tennessee Williams Festival; Excerpt Available

Tuesday, March 27th, 2007 by Suzanne La Rosa

NewSouth novelist John Pritchard, who made Barnes & Noble’s 2005 Top Ten Sensational Debut Novels list with his book Junior Ray, is a featured author at the Tennessee Williams Festival in New Orleans this coming weekend. He’ll read from The Yazoo Blues, his hilarious next book due out from NewSouth next spring. Read an excerpt from The Yazoo Blues here.

In The Yazoo Blues, our antihero leaves law enforcement and becomes a historian. It‚Äôs all gotdam curious, if Junior Ray does say so hisself. John Pritchard’s first novel, Junior Ray, is available directly from NewSouth Books, at, or from your local book retailer.

Visit John Pritchard’s Amazon blog at the following link.

Radio Interview with Longleaf Author Roger Reid To Air

Monday, March 26th, 2007 by Lyndsey

Longleaf author Roger Reid will be interviewed on Alabama Public Radio as part of Book Week, hosted by Troy University Public Radio in conjunction with the Alabama Public Radio Spring Fundraiser. His segment will air on Tuesday, March 27 at 2:00 p.m.

Reid will discuss the wildlife issues at the heart of his new young adult thriller, Longleaf, and will be selling autographed copies of the book at a special price. Proceeds from all book sales support Alabama Public Radio programming.

Set in the real-life Conecuh National Forest, Longleaf is a terrific adventure story and an excellent introduction to the plants and animals of the Alabama eco-system.

Longleaf is available now from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite online or local book retailers.

Rheta Grimsley Johnson Talks Upcoming NewSouth Book

Monday, March 19th, 2007 by Brian Seidman

Columnist Rheta Grimsley Johnson, author of the upcoming Poor Man’s Provence from NewSouth Books, spoke this past Thursday at the Alabama Department of Archives and History’s monthly Architreats program. Darryn Simmons of the Montgomery Advertiser wrote, “Johnson answered questions from die-hard fans in the audience that religiously read her weekly column, which appears Mondays in the Montgomery Advertiser. She also kept the crowd laughing as she told stories about her career.” From the article:

Johnson is currently working on a book about the Cajun culture in Louisiana, [Poor Man’s Provence].

“It’s the most different place you can go without a passport,” she said.

Johnson said she found a number of similarities between the French-influenced culture there and the rest of the South, including a common obsession with art and food.

“Where else do you spend hours on preparing a meal besides Paris and Montgomery?” she said.

See the full article at the Montgomery Advertiser website.

Poor Man’s Provence will be available in Spring 2007 from NewSouth Books. For more information, call NewSouth directly at (866) 639-7688.

Tubby Meets Katrina Praised on Alabama Public Radio

Tuesday, March 6th, 2007 by Lyndsey

Alabama Public Radio’s Don Noble has given a glowing review of Tony Dunbar’s recent mystery Tubby Meets Katrina on Noble’s radio program Bookmark. Noble said, “It is always a treat to become acquainted with a new mystery hero. Tubby Dubonnet is such a treat.”

The seventh mystery in the Tubby Dubonnet series, Tubby Meets Katrina tells of Dubonnet’s return to New Orleans, just as Hurricane Katrina hits. In the chaos, an escaped psychopath assaults and then stalks Tubby���s daughter. Tubby must use his wits and his connections to protect himself and his family while trying to restore his home and help bring his beloved city back to life. The fast-paced story includes incisive vignettes of the dangerous days just after Katrina hit and of the frustrating weeks that followed.

From the review:

This novel paints a grim picture of the Crescent City in those days, the chaos at the Convention Center and on the interstate overpass, the flooding of the jail, the looting, the mysterious absence of FEMA, the incompetence of state and local authorities.

One of the strengths of the six earlier Dubonnet novels was Dunbar’s detailed, loving description of the city’s pleasures, especially the mouthwatering pleasures of New Orleans food. There is no pleasure and no food in this book. Everyone is eating canned goods or, later, meals ready to eat. Dunbar is a fine describer of food, in the tradition of Hemingway and, more recently, Jim Harrison.

We can hope that when New Orleans gets back somewhere close to normal, upcoming Tubby Dubonnet novels will again be set in the Caf?� Du Monde, Antoine’s, and Commander’s Palace, and the characters will again be eating beignets, trout almondine, and oysters Rockefeller.

Read or listen to the full review from Alabama Public Radio. Tubby Meets Katrina is available directly from NewSouth Books, Amazon, or your local or online book retailer.

Kathryn Tucker Windham Promotes Literacy with 'Read Across America' at the Alabama Archives and History

Tuesday, February 27th, 2007 by Lyndsey

Kathryn Tucker Windham has been invited by the National Education Associaton to participate in their tenth annual ‘Read Across America’ literacy program. On Friday, March 2, 2007 at 10:00 a.m., the beloved Alabama storyteller will be speaking to the public on the importance of reading. The event will be hosted by the Alabama Archives and History and will take place in the Alabama Power Auditorium on the 1st floor of the west wing of the Archives. The event is free and open to the public.

Windham’s book, Jeffrey‚Äôs Favorite 13 Ghost Stories is available directly from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite local or online bookseller.

Dr. Wade Hall Makes Donation of Historical Southern Memorabilia

Monday, February 26th, 2007 by Mary Katherine

NewSouth author Wade Hall has made a generous donation to The University of Alabama’s W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library. The gift, which includes books, sheet music, sound recordings and photographs, now comprises the Wade Hall Collection of Southern History and Culture.

Publisher‚Äôs Bindings Online, a digital archive project which collects decorative book bindings from 1815-1930, has selected over 1,000 titles from the Wade Hall Collection for the project, including many signed first-edition books by Southern authors. “I am delighted with the many dimensions being discovered in my collections by the faculty of the library,” said Dr. Hall, “as well as the students, scholars and historians who are using my donations to the University of Alabama.”

To learn more about Publisher’s Bindings Online and Dr. Hall, visit the PBO Website. Wade Hall’s NewSouth publications are available from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite local or online book retailer.

Radio Interview with Grievances Author Mark Ethridge To Air

Tuesday, February 20th, 2007 by Lyndsey

Grievances author Mark Ethridge will be interviewed on North Carolina’s Public Radio program, The State of Things. His segment will air on Wednesday, February 21 at 11:45 a.m.

In Grievances, Ethridge, a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist, tells the story of a pair of reporters who set out to solve the decades-old murder of a thirteen-year-year-old boy during racial unrest in rural South Carolina.

To hear the interview, visit the WFAE website and follow the listening instructions.

Grievances is now available from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite local or online book retailer.