Book Report: This week in books

McSweeney’s Winter Tour comes to Malaprop’s on Friday, Feb. 8. Started in 1998 by Dave Eggers, author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, the initial literary journal only published work that had previously been rejected by other lit journals. Needless to say, it was a phenomenon with disgruntled writers everywhere. Now also a publishing house, McSweeney’s is responsible for launching the careers of young writers as well as publishing the works of established names such as Joyce Carol Oates. (The New York McSweeney’s store even has a house band, One Ring Zero.) Recently, the company’s distribution was taken over by Perseus Books to offset backruptcy losses. Still, the show must go on.

So, some faces from the still-popular publisher are currently on tour. On the Asheville stop, managing editor Eli Horowitz, and contributors John Brandon (author of Arkansas), literary prodigy Brett Loudermilk and Davy Rothbart (of Found Magazine) will read from various works. The bookstore promises a stock of Found Magazine, Wholphin DVDs, Believer magazines, and McSweeney’s Quarterly Concerns.
7 p.m., free. Info: 254-6734.

• Rita Mae Brown’s Malaprop’s reader (slated for last Tuesday, Jan. 29) has been rescheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 19. This is still a ticketed event; one ticket is complimentary with each purchase of a Rita Mae Brown book. To learn more about the event and read a review of Brown’s most recent mystery, The Purrfect Murder, click here.

• New Southern literary publisher, Bressler Scoggins Literary Management recently opened in Greensboro, N.C., and is accepting manuscript submissions in the genres of romance, commercial fiction, supernatural, Southern lit, mystery, fantasy, YA, literary fiction, women’s motivational and more.

• Local author Russell B. Hilliard, Sr., recently completed his new book, Willa the Gorilla & Me, to be published by The Story Words. The story evolved from Hilliard’s hospital stay, where he was gifted a large, stuffed gorilla toy by an Ecuadorian family. The toy became, for the author, a symbol of love and from it he drew much-needed healing. It took two years for the story of Willa the Gorilla to make the transition to book form, but the completed work — a bilingual endeavor — deals with both children with cancer and mountain gorillas facing extinction.

• Be my friend (or someone else’s) on Good Reads. If you’ve yet to discover this on line community for book enthusiasts, now’s the perfect time. The web site turns readers into literary experts — post reviews, learn about new books and link with other readers who share similar tastes in authors, subject matter and writing style. Oh, and if you do want to be my virtual reading buddy, click here.

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

3 thoughts on “Book Report: This week in books

  1. Geraldine

    I just stumbled on your blog somewhat randomly, but noticed that you were talking about goodreads. Recently, I’ve been working on a site called that lets you track books as well as movies, music, and other interests. It works kind of like goodreads but allows you to track more types of media with your friends in one place. It also lets you create “vines” between books that recommend one book to a user who’s looking at another book.

    We actually released very recently and would be really interested in getting feedback from folks like you who use similar services and are active in the blogosphere. You can visit and request an account to try it out (we’ll send you a link shortly after your request) or ping me at my email w/ any questions. Thanks!

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.