shopping_cart

Appalachia

Appalachia Book List

2018 Weatherford Award Finalist · Finalist, 2018 Library of Virginia Literary Awards  · Winner, 2017 Appalachian Book of the Year (Fiction)
Cover of 'Fire Is Your Water'

Fire Is Your Water
A Novel
By Jim Minick

At age twenty, Ada’s reputation as a faith healer defines her in her rural Pennsylvania community. But on the day in 1953 that her family’s barn is consumed by flame, her identity is upended: for the first time, she fears death and doubts God. Fire Is Your Water, acclaimed memoirist Jim Minick’s first novel, builds on magical realism and social observation to offer an insider’s glimpse into the culture of Appalachia.

Cover of 'Yellow Stonefly'

Yellow Stonefly
A Novel
By Tim Poland

Haunted by her past and the deaths that marked it, Sandy Holston wields her fly rod with uncanny accuracy as her life plays out along a tight line between herself and a fish on the other end. In this rare fly fishing novel with a female protagonist, Tim Poland weaves suspense and introspection into an unforgettable read.

Cover of 'Appalachian Mushrooms'

Appalachian Mushrooms
A Field Guide
By Walter E. Sturgeon

From one of the region’s foremost mushroom hunters, Walter E. Sturgeon, comes a long-overdue field guide to finding and identifying the mushrooms found in the Appalachian mountains. This guide is destined to be an indispensable authority on the subject for everyone from beginning hobbyists to trained experts, throughout Appalachia and beyond.

Cover of 'In the House of Wilderness'

In the House of Wilderness
A Novel
By Charles Dodd White

After months of wandering homeless through the landscape of Appalachia, a young woman named Rain finds herself part of a desperate family driven by exploitation and abuse. A harrowing story of choice and sacrifice, In the House of Wilderness is a novel about the modern South and how we fight through hardship and grief to find a way home.

Cover of 'Gone Dollywood'

Gone Dollywood
Dolly Parton’s Mountain Dream
By Graham Hoppe

Country music superstar Dolly Parton’s Dollywood is a 150-acre fantasyland that hosts three million people a year. What does it tell us about the modern South, and in turn what does that tell us about America as a whole? Hoppe blends tourism, public history, and personal reflection into an unforgettable interrogation of Southern American identity.

Cover of 'Weedeater'

Weedeater
An Illustrated Novel
By Robert Gipe

Weedeater picks up six years after the end of Robert Gipe’s first novel, Trampoline, and continues the story of the people of Canard County, Kentucky, living through the last hurrah of the coal industry and battling with opioid abuse. The events it chronicles are frantic, but its voice is by turns taciturn and angry, filled with humor and grace.

2018 Great Group Reads Selection
Cover of 'Maggie Boylan'

Maggie Boylan
By Michael Henson

Set in rural America amid an epidemic of opiate abuse, this collection of stories tells of a woman’s search for her own peculiar kind of redemption. Addict, thief, and liar, Maggie Boylan is queen of profanity, a hungry trickster. But she is also a woman of deep compassion and strength. Her journey is by turns frightening, funny, and deeply moving.

Cover of 'Counting Down'

Counting Down
A Memoir of Foster Parenting and Beyond
By Deborah Gold

When Deborah Gold and her husband signed up to foster parent in their rural mountain community, they did not foresee that it would lead to a roller-coaster fifteen years of involvement with a traumatized yet resilient birth family. They fell in love with Michael (a toddler when he came to them), yet they had to reckon with the knowledge that he could leave their lives at any time. In Counting Down, Gold tells the story of forging a family within a confounding system.

Cover of 'Fall or Fly'

Fall or Fly
The Strangely Hopeful Story of Foster Care and Adoption in Appalachia
By Wendy Welch

Chaos. Frustration. Compassion. Desperation. Hope. These are the five words that author Wendy Welch says best summarize the state of foster care in the coalfields of Appalachia. Her assessment is based on interviews with more than sixty social workers, parents, and children who have gone through “the system.” The riveting stories in Fall or Fly tell what foster care is like, from the inside out.

A School Library Journal Best Picture Book of 2016
Cover of 'When Grandma Gatewood Took a Hike'

When Grandma Gatewood Took a Hike
By Michelle Houts and Erica Magnus

In 1955, sixty-seven-year-old Emma “Grandma” Gatewood became the first woman to solo hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail in one through hike. Michelle Houts and Erica Magnus bring us the first children’s book about her feat and the unexpected challenges she encountered on the journey she initially called a “lark.”

Cover of 'The Common Lot and Other Stories'

The Common Lot and Other Stories
The Published Short Fiction, 1908–1921
By Emma Bell Miles
· Edited by Grace Toney Edwards
· Introduction by Grace Toney Edwards

The seventeen narratives of The Common Lot and Other Stories, published in popular magazines across the United States between 1908 and 1921 and collected here for the first time, are driven by Emma Bell Miles’s singular vision of the mountain people of her home in southeastern Tennessee. That vision is shaped by her strong sense of social justice, her naturalist’s sensibility, and her insider’s perspective.

Winner of the 2015 Weatherford Award in Fiction · Finalist, Judy Gaines Young Book Award
Cover of 'Trampoline'

Trampoline
An Illustrated Novel
By Robert Gipe

When Dawn Jewell—fifteen, restless, curious, and wry—joins her grandmother’s fight against mountaintop removal mining in spite of herself, she has to decide whether to save a mountain or save herself; be ruled by love or by anger; remain in the land of her birth or run for her life. Inspired by oral tradition and punctuated by Gipe’s raw and whimsical drawings Trampoline is a powerful portrait of a place.

Cover of 'Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean'

Walk Till the Dogs Get Mean
Meditations on the Forbidden from Contemporary Appalachia
Edited by Adrian Blevins and Karen Salyer McElmurray

In essays that take wide-ranging forms—ideal for creative nonfiction classes—established and emerging writers with roots in Appalachia take on the theme of silencing in Appalachian culture. They write about families left behind, hard-earned educations, selves transformed, identities chosen, and risks taken.

Cover of 'Keeping Heart'

Keeping Heart
A Memoir of Family Struggle, Race, and Medicine
By Otis Trotter
· Introduction by Joe William Trotter Jr.

Organized around the life histories, medical struggles, and recollections of Otis Trotter and his thirteen siblings, Keeping Heart is a personal account of an African American family’s journey north during the second Great Migration.