Best Stories of the South — 25 Years!

One of my favorite series of anthologies is the annual New Stories from the South — always a treasure trove of great fiction and a perfect late-summer treat. This year marks the 25th anniversary edition of the series, and this latest collection, edited by Amy Hempel, features some of the best names in the business, from veteran writers to some of the newest talents bursting onto the scene: Dorothy Allison, Rick Bass, Wendell Berry, Tim Gautreaux, Ron Rash, George Singleton, Elizabeth Spencer, Wells Tower, Brad Watson, and Kevin Wilson, among others. The only shame in all this? I haven’t had a chance to read the milestone-year collection yet! (It’s sitting on the side of my desk, staring scornfully at me — as are the blank pages that will soon become my syllabi for the semester that starts a little over a week from now.) But that shouldn’t prevent others from getting in on the fun, so instead of a review, a quick news announcement: Algonquin Books is giving away copies of the new collection on their own book blog this week — and also featuring interviews with Amy Hempel and Wells Tower as well as with series editor Kathy Pories and founding editor Shannon Ravenel, both among the best in the business. Check it out here! And try to manage your time better than mine when it comes to stuff like this….