Decatur Book Festival Day Two

September 17, 2013 Cassandra King, Decatur Book Festival, Deep South magazine, Jason Mott, joshilyn jackson, Kim Boykin, Mary Alice Monroe, Pat Conroy, Wilton Barnhardt 2

Day two began happy, as my husband Kevin joined me for the day of authors and fun.

First up was Jason Mott, author of  THE RETURNED.  I had just read Jennifer’s awesome review on her blog Book-alicious Mama of this book and made the decision to buy and read it before the festival.  I was anxious to hear how he got the idea for the book, and how it had been optioned to Brad Pitt’s production company.  The ABC TV show using the title RESURRECTION will begin in March of 2014.  Jason was a comfortable interviewee, and he spoke a lot of his journey from student and poet to working in a phone company call center to published author.  His discussion of the dream he had about coming home and his deceased mother sitting at his kitchen table and just talking to him was the impetus for the book was captivating.  The audience could hear the love and care in his voice.  I introduced myself to Jason before the talk, and now I wished I’d had hours to chat.  I’ve since finished the book…look out the review will be up soon.  All I can say is get your hands on this book.  I bought my sister the e-book because I didn’t want to share my hardcover…ha ha.

After lunch we listened to a panel of three lovely ladies.  Cassandra King, her new novel MOONRISE, Kim Boykin, her debut novel THE WISDOM OF HAIR, and Mary Alice Monroe, her latest THE SUMMER GIRLS.  The moderator was Joshilyn Jackson, I make no bones about the fact that she is my ultimate girl crush author.  I have others, but she is just the best at telling a southern tale, and her recordings of her books are awesome!  It was a fantastic panel, the ladies were courteous and kind and raved about each ohters works and yet we also got a taste of their books and how they write.  Cassandra King’s husband is the legendary Pat Conroy, and he was in attendance, I did gush a little all over both of them…sorry.  I even texted another author to tell him…he should have made the drive from Birmingham…you know who you are!!  I had Cassandra sign my book and hugged on Kim Boykin who has been a fun twitter friend.

Next up was Wilton Barnhardt.  I was lucky enough to win his new book,
LOOKAWAY, LOOKAWAY  from Deep South Magazine, and she rushed it to me so he could sign.  Imagine we are sitting in the sanctuary of the Decatur Presbyterian Church and this man is reading from his book about an unfortunate night of sex between two college students!  It was a riot.  His book has a few characters in it that make each of our families look less dysfunctional.  I’m looking forward to the read!!  As he signed my book he was praising book bloggers…gotta love a man who enjoys the bloggers!

Last event for the day was the once again incomparable Joshilyn Jackson speaking with Gillian Royes.  The ladies lit up the stage at Eddie’s Attic and talked about their very different writing styles and discipline versus a complete lack of it.  This was a lovely panel to end the day and event.  I sat with Joshilyn’s husband, sister in law and friends, it was pure pleasure.  I bought a copy of GODS IN ALABAMA, as it is still one of my favorite of her books.  I have the audio forever in my audible account.

I cannot say enough good things about the Decatur Book Festival.  It is organized, jam packed and larger than life!  There were events and authors for every possible reading preference.  The volunteers were friendly and helped me get from point A to B with no problems.  The heat and humidity was my only complaint, and they can hardly be held accountable for those things!

I’ll be back next year Georgia!!

Forgive me for my lack for formatting finesse!!  I swear someday I’m going to get someone to teach me better!! 

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