Mississippi Books and Writers

July 1997

Note: Prices listed below reflect the publisher's suggested list price. They are subject to change without notice.

The Lost Grizzlies: A Search for Survivors in the Wilderness of Colorado The Lost Grizzlies: A Search for Survivors in the Wilderness of Colorado

Nonfiction by Rick Bass

Houghton Mifflin (Paperback, $13.00, ISBN: 0395857007)

Publication date: July 1997


Featuring the exhilarating insight which his readers have come to expect, Rick Bass’s account of a relentless search for a species of bear rumored to be extinct is as much a book about humans as it is about bears. Bass is the acclaimed author of Winter and The Ninemile Wolves.

Cecelia’s Sin

By Will D. Campbell

Mercer Univ Press (Paperback, $8.95, ISBN: 0865542139 )

Publication date: July 1997

On Being Female, Black, and Free: Essays by Margaret Walker, 1932-1992

Edited by Maryemma Graham

University of Tennessee Press (Hardcover: ISBN: 0870499807; Paperback: ISBN: 0870499815)

Publication date: July 1997

A Place Called Mississippi: Mississippi Narratives

Nonfiction edited by Marion Barnwell

University Press of Mississippi (Paperback, $18.00, ISBN: 0878059644)

Publication date: July 1997

A Legacy of Vengeance A Legacy of Vengeance

Fiction by John Armistead

Dell (Paperback, $5.50, ISBN: 0440223849)

Publication date: July 1997


In an explosion of madness, the years of peace between the black and white communities of the Mississippi hill country are shattered. Four men — a preacher, a lawyer, an auto mechanic, and an insurance salesman — have been killed by someone who drives a 1960s white Pontiac. In his search for the killer, Sheriff Bramlett is hurled back to the tumultuous era of high-riders, church burnings and Klansmen. (Previously published by Carroll & Graf.)

Shadow Seed

A Novel by Jim Fraiser

Black Belt Press (Hardcover, $24.00, ISBN: 1881320693)

Publication date: July 1997

A Handmade Wilderness A Handmade Wilderness

Nonfiction by Don Schueler

Houghton-Mifflin (Paperback Reprint Edition, $12.00, ISBN: 0395860229)

Publication date: July 1997


In 1968, two gay young men—one white, one black—quixotically decided to buy 80 backwoods acres in southern Mississippi, little realizing that they were embarking on the greatest adventure of their lives. Don Schueler’s account of the 25 years that followed, during which he and Willie Brown transformed their “least worst land” into a wild Eden, is a modern saga by turns suspenseful, funny, and deeply moving.

Ornate with Smoke

By Sterling Plumpp

Third World Press (Hardcover, ISBN: 088378193X; Paperback, ISBN: 0883781980)

Publication date: July 1997

Nightwatcher Nightwatcher

A Novel by Charles Wilson

Leisure Books (Mass Market Paperback, $4.99, ISBN: 0843942754)

Publication date: July 1997


The staff of the hospital for the criminally insane in Davis County, Mississippi, had seen a lot in their time—but nothing like the savage killing of Judith Salter, one of their nurses. And with three escaped inmates on the loose, there is no telling which of them the butcher is or who the next victim will be. Even worse, as the danger and terror grow apace, the only eyewitness to the nurse’s death is a psychopathic mass murderer who is beginning to reveal his own fearsome agenda.

Familiar Fire Familiar Heart

By Caroline Burnes (Carolyn Haines)

Harlequin (Paperback, ISBN: 0373224265)

Publication date: July 1997

Touched Touched

A novel by Carolyn Haines

Plume (Paperback, ISBN: 0452276705)

Reprint Edition

Publication date: July 1997

Description from Kirkus Reviews:

Haines (Summer of the Redeemers, 1994) ladles on the pluck and grit as she limns the life of Mattie, a strong woman who comes to live in a preternaturally mean Mississippi town, where she faces down the local bigots, survives a severe spousal beating, and exacts a deadly revenge. Jexville in 1926, as 16-year-old mail-order bride Mattie soon learns, is a town where intolerance is as unavoidable as the humidity. The people are devout, suspicious, narrow-minded.

They’re also hypocrites: The men drink bootleg liquor; the women are malicious; and both sexes support a husband’s right to beat his wife. To be in any way different is to invite trouble, which is exactly what Mattie’s new friend JoHanna McVay, married to handsome Will, a purveyor of moonshine to political bigwigs, often does.

Mattie, newly married to Elikah, the town’s barber, meets JoHanna and her nine-year-old daughter, Duncan, at a children’s party. Duncan, struck by lightning, soon acquires the ability to foretell the future. Then Mattie is violently beaten and sexually humiliated by Elikah. Pregnant, she decides not to have his child. JoHanna, accordingly, arranges for an illegal abortion and tries to convince Mattie to leave Elikah, but JoHanna soon has troubles of her own: Duncan’s accurate predictions of death and destruction convince the locals that she’s a child of Satan.

The McVays decide to go into hiding; Floyd, a friend of Mattie and Duncan’s, is brutally murdered; and Mattie kills a local bootlegger as she tries to escape murderous Elikah. In the long calm post-mayhem, Mattie remains married, but Elikah, no longer a wife-beater, plans a deadly revenge. As WW II begins, another frightening prediction from the now-adult Duncan finally impels Mattie to wreak her own vengeance. Action overload as Mattie and friends more than prove their credentials as cool, modern, and independent women able to cope with everything. —Copyright 1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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