Mississippi Books and Writers

March 2001

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

The New Wolves The New Wolves: The Return of the Mexican Wolf to the American Southwest

Nonfiction by Rick Bass

Lyons Press (Paperback, $14.95, ISBN: 1585742651)

Publication date: March 2001

Description from Book List:

“I’d rather try to protect an undesignated wilderness area … than spend energy on lobbying for the return of some single species,” Bass declares, describing plans for the release of nearly a dozen Mexican wolves (lobos) in the Blue Mountains of Arizona. Concern for the larger ecosystem is clear as Bass scans the overgrazed Arizona environment, scientists’ efforts to ready wolves raised in captivity for the wild, and the positions of ranchers and environmentalists. Here, as in The Ninemile Wolves (1992) and The Sky, the Stars, the Wilderness, Bass’ involving descriptions of the lobos and their home in the mountains explain the interaction between species preservation and ecological recovery. Committed as this skilled nature writer is to restoration of the wilderness and endangered species, he urges attention to broader issues: “We must take care of the wolves and yet concern ourselves, too, with the rest of the system … without compromising our beliefs and values.” —Mary Carroll.

Colter: The True Story of the Best Dog I Ever Had

Nonfiction by Rick Bass

Large Print Edition

G.K. Hall (Hardcover, $28.95, ISBN: 0786231025)

Publication date: March 2001


Colter was the runt of the litter, and Rick Bass took him only because nobody else would. Soon, though, Bass realized he had a raging genius on his hands, and he raided his daughters’ college fund to send Colter to the best schools. Colter could be a champion, Rick was told, but he’d have to be broken, slowed down. Rick “could no more imagine a slowing-down Colter than a slow-motion bolt of lightning in the sky,” and instead of breaking Colter he followed him. Colter led him into new territory, an unexplored land where he felt more alive, more intimately connected to the world, than he’d ever been before. In the course of telling us Colter’s story, Rick Bass also tells us of his childhood fascination with snapping turtles and dirt, and of the other animals—including people—that have shaped his life. Colter is an interspecies love story that vividly captures the relationship between humans and dogs. Like all of Bass’s work, it is passionate, poetic, and original.

Nevada Barr Presents Malice Domestic 10: An Anthology of Original Traditional Mystery Stories Nevada Barr Presents Malice Domestic 10: An Anthology of Original Traditional Mystery Stories

A short story anthology edited by Nevada Barr

Avon (Paperback, $5.99, ISBN: 0380804840)

Publication date: March 2001


Clue into a world of murder and mayhem from the ingenious minds of today’s most fiendishly clever mystery writers: K.K. Beck, Simon Brett, Susan Dunlap, Carolyn Hart, Melodie Johnson Howe, M.D. Lake, Martha C. Lawrence, Peter Lovesey, Margaret Maron, Sujata Massey, Katherine Hall Page, Anne Perry, Nancy Pickard, and Elizabeth Daniels Squire.

The Cassandra Prophecy

A Novel by Charles Wilson

Graystone Publishing (Paperback, $13.95, ISBN: 0966307895)

Publication date: March 2001

Description from Kirkus Reviews:

Secret Service agent Clay Rodgers, returning to Biloxi after his brother is killed aboard the family yacht Cassandra, can’t imagine what anyone had against inoffensive Robert—until traces of drugs aboard the boat link him to possible drug-dealing by his former employer, Cajun strip-joint king Antonio Brouchard, and a well-organized Vietnamese smuggling ring determined to kill off any informants interested in the reward Clay’s advertised. As Clay resumes his guilty affair with Robert’s former high-school girlfriend Linda, the obvious suspects cop pleas to lesser crimes—narcotics, assault, etc.—leaving one last ugly secret. Routine enough until the last 50 pages, when a rapid series of stings reminds you how surely Wilson juggled suspects and motives in Nightwatcher (1990). An author to watch. —Copyright 1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Eudora Welty & PoliticsEudora Welty and Politics: Did the Writer Crusade?

Edited by Harriet Pollack and Suzanne Marrs

Louisiana State University Press (Hardcover, $39.95, ISBN: 0807126187)

Publication date: March 2001

Jesus and the Sweet Pilgrim Baptist Church Jesus and the Sweet Pilgrim Baptist Church: A Fable

By Clayton Sullivan

Reprint edition; first published 1992

University Press of Mississippi (Paperback, $15.00, ISBN: 1578063329)

Publication date: April 2002

Description from the publisher:

A Mississippi fable of divine visitation, jealousy, murder, and salvation.

For a long time nothing much has changed for the poor black congregation of the Sweet Pilgrim Baptist Church of Clearwater, Mississippi. Eastertime has dutifully rolled around again. The azaleas are in bloom.

And then off in the distance comes a wondrous music—a music that thunders throughout the sky with sweet majesty. It brings in its trail a celestial cloud and signals a heavenly visit: Jesus and Simon Peter have come to town. But they are women. Jewish women—well dressed and built like runway models, to be exact. “At times I’ve come to earth in the form of a man. But this time I’ve come as a woman. Is something wrong with me appearing as a woman?” Ms. Jesus asks the surprised churchgoers.

In short order, this unexpected turn of events becomes the norm. Jesus and Simon Peter drink chablis with the locals; arrange for oil drilling on black families’ tiny lots; make some folks rich and a few bitterly envious; get caught up in civil rights matters; and figure in a suspense-filled series of events that bring joy and prosperity, hatred and murder, and, as a final surprise, redemption.

When Clayton Sullivan first published Jesus and the Sweet Pilgrim Baptist Church with Doubleday in 1992, many sang his little fable’s praises. Morgan Freeman called the book “A delightful, if reverent, romp up and down the aisles of a Mississippi Baptist congregation. Fun!”

Eugenia Price said, “That Jesus the Carpenter of Nazareth was the Son of God occurred to almost no one until coarse and uncouth people as well as legalistic, brainy, religious types began to see Him live, act and speak in a way unlike anyone else. Whether they spoke in vulgarities or in pious-sounding platitudes, people were taken off guard by the fact that He was a common workman, homeless, lived simply—even crudely—did and said startling, unorthodox things that shook people to their roots, as in Clayton Sullivan’s remarkable fable, Jesus and the Sweet Pilgrim Baptist Church. This is a fable. No one is claiming that Jesus might come again as a well-dressed Jewish woman. So, put aside your prejudices and read it. The Gospel is here in all its simple, shining power.”

Clayton Sullivan is a retired Baptist minister living in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He is a professor emeritus of philosophy and religion at the University of Southern Mississippi.

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