Crime Fiction Down South
Thomas Mullen, Attica Locke, S.A. Cosby
Sponsored by the Dekalb Library Foundation
Award-winning novelists, Thomas Mullen, Attica Locke, and S. A. Cosby, talk about their hard-hitting crime novels set in Georgia, Texas, and Virginia. Mullen’s novel Lightning Men explores race, law enforcement, and justice in mid-century Atlanta. Locke’s Heaven, My Home, a sequel to her earlier book Bluebird, Bluebird, chronicles a Texas Ranger’s search for a missing child, and grapples with American nostalgia and white supremacism. S. A. Cosby’s Blacktop Wasteland follows an unconventional investigator tracing the cause of a small town minister’s death. These authors will discuss what they love about crime fiction, what it tells us about our society, and where it goes from here.Charis is excited to be the bookseller for this event. Register here.
About the Authors:
Thomas Mullen is the author of Darktown, an NPR Best Book of the Year, which has been shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Southern Book Prize, the Indies Choice Book Award, and has been nominated for two CWA Dagger Awards; The Last Town on Earth, which was named Best Debut Novel of 2006 by USA Today and was awarded the James Fenimore Cooper Prize for excellence in historical fiction; The Many Deaths of the Firefly Brothers; and The Revisionists. His 2017 novel, Lightning Men, which follows the characters from Darktown two years later, was named one of the Top 10 Crime Novels of 2017 by The New York Times Book Review. His works have been named to Year’s Best lists by The Chicago Tribune, USA Today, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Kirkus Reviews, The Onion’s A/V Club, The San Diego Union-Times, Paste Magazine, The Cleveland Plain-Dealer, and Amazon. His stories and essays have been published in Grantland, Paste, The Huffington Post, and Atlanta Magazine. He lives in Atlanta with his wife and sons.
Attica Locke’s latest novel Heaven, My Home is the sequel to Edgar Award-winning Bluebird, Bluebird. Her third novel Pleasantville was the winner of the Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction and was also long-listed for the Bailey’s Prize for Women’s Fiction. The Cutting Season was the winner of the Ernest Gaines Award for Literary Excellence. Her first novel Black Water Rising was nominated for an Edgar Award, an NAACP Image Award, as well as a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and was short-listed for the Women’s Prize for Fiction. A former fellow at the Sundance Institute’s Feature Filmmaker’s Lab, Locke works as a screenwriter as well. Most recently, she was a writer and producer on Netflix’s When They See Us and also the Hulu adaptation of Little Fires Everywhere. A native of Houston, Texas, Attica lives in Los Angeles, California, with her husband and daughter.
Shawn A. Cosby is a writer from Southeastern Virginia. His short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies and magazines. His short story “The Grass Beneath My Feet” won the Anthony award for best short story in 2019. His writing is influenced by his experience as a bouncer, construction worker, retail manager, and for six hours, a mascot for a major fast food chain inside the world’s hottest costume. When he isn’t crafting tales of murder and mayhem he assists the dedicated staff at J.K. Redmind Funeral home as a mortician’s assistant. He is an avid hiker and is also known as one hell of a chess player. His most recent novel is Blacktop Wasteland.
About the Moderators:
Carl Suddler is an Assistant Professor of History at Emory University. His research interests lie at the intersections of youth, race, and crime in the United States. Suddler’s first book, Presumed Criminal: Black Youth and the Justice System in Postwar New York, was published in 2019.
Kareem Joseph is a doctoral student and Centennial Scholar at Emory University. His broader interests include the intersections of race, gender, violence, class, and criminality in African American literature, namely crime fiction. The central focus of his research seeks to unsettle notions of crime and Black criminality in African American crime and detective fiction, as well as popular discourse, by tracking genealogies of U.S. anti-Black violence.
Sponsored by The Dekalb Library Foundation, whose mission is to provide support for DeKalb County Public Library beyond public funding and to enrich the lives of DeKalb County citizens through educational, cultural and literary programs and services.
“One incendiary image ignites the next in this highly combustible procedural…written with a ferocious passion that’ll knock the wind out of you.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Fine Southern storytelling meets hard-boiled crime in a tale that connects an overlooked chapter of history to our own continuing struggles with race to
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From the acclaimed author of “the most compelling new series in crime fiction” (Michael Koryta, New York Times bestselling author) comes “a sharply observed novel” (New York Times) that explores race, law enforcement, and justice in mid-century Atlanta.
Officer Denny Rakestraw and “Negro Officers” Lucius Boggs and Tommy Smith have the
In this "captivating" crime novel (People), Texas Ranger Darren Mathews is on the hunt for a missing child -- but it's the boy's family of white supremacists who are his real target.
Attica Locke—a writer and producer of FOX’s Empire—delivers an engrossing, complex, and cinematic thriller about crime and racial justice
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist (Mystery/Thriller)
Edgar Award Nominee (Best First Novel)
The Orange Prize for Fiction (Shortlist)
A "heartbreakingly resonant" thriller about the explosive intersection of love, race, and justice from a writer and producer of the Emmy-winning Fox TV show Empire (USA Today).
"In Bluebird, Bluebird Attica Locke had both mastered the thriller and exceeded it."-Ann Patchett
WINNER OF THE HARPER LEE PRIZE FOR LEGAL FICTION
Wall Street Journal BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEY’S WOMEN’S PRIZE FOR FICTION
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From Attica Locke, a writer and producer of FOX’s Empire:
“The Cutting Season is a rare murder mystery with heft, a historical novel that thrills, a page-turner that makes you think. Attica Locke is a dazzling writer with a conscience.”—Dolen Perkins-Valdez, New York Times bestselling author of Wench
Los Angeles Times Book Prize Winner • New York Times Notable Book • NPR’s Best Books of the Year • BookPage’s #1 Mystery and Suspense of the Year • Sun Sentinel’s #1 Best Mystery of the Year
“I loved Blacktop Wasteland...[A] fast-paced, bareknuckle thriller.” -Stephen King
A startling examination of the deliberate criminalization of black youths from the 1930s to today