Atlanta Novelists—A Tradition Continues

The South has a rich literary tradition, from author Flannery O’Connor to William Faulkner. Though I was born and raised in the Midwest, for almost 20 years as a Georgia girl, I’ve been blown away by the writing chops of the many authors who also make metro-Atlanta their home.

Today is Halloween, so let’s begin with Lynn Cullen whose literary historical fiction earned her a spot as a guest expert on PBS’s recent American Masters TV episode, Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive. Cullen had undertaken exhaustive research for her 2014 bestselling novel, MRS. POE.





I’m with Lynn Cullen at FoxTale Book Shoppe

A few years before, Vanity Fair magazine featured a few of our fair city’s women authors—from thriller writer Karin Slaughter and debut superstar Kathryn Stockett to Joshilyn Jackson with her unforgettable voice and Emily Giffin who’s got legions of fans. You gotta love how the ladies are all fitted out in dazzling belle attire.

Audible fans will find Atlanta authors to love, too. There’s Martha Hall Kelly’s THE LILAC GIRLS: A NOVEL, a fictionalized story surrounding real New York socialite Caroline Ferriday during WWII. Kelly’s debut has been compared to Kristin Hannah’s book club phenomenon, THE NIGHTINGALE.

I also enjoyed Susan Rebecca White’s A PLACE AT THE TABLE, a beautifully written, touching story about an African-American woman who suffered from racism growing up and a gay man in Georgia who’s ostracized by his own family.

Of course, my blog post would not be complete without highlighting an Atlanta author’s novel that alternates between the past and present.

Karen White is prolific in writing novels that shift between time periods. I first got hooked on her books in 2009 when I came upon THE LOST HOURS. Here are the book’s opening lines: “When I was twelve, I helped my granddaddy bury a box in the back garden of our Savannah house. I didn’t ask him what was in it. The box belonged to my grandmother….” Who can resist reading on? Not me.

To learn more about authors who reside around Atlanta—or other authors who flock for the city’s many literary events or even for books with stories set in this region—I highly recommend Alison Law’s new podcast series, Literary Atlanta. Check it out!

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