Early summer roundup: Reviews, media attention, and author events

WVU Press makes its first appearance on NPR’s Fresh Air (a significant publicity milestone!), where Nancy McKinley’s novel-in-stories St. Christopher on Pluto receives a favorable review. “Like the best comic fiction, it’s constructed out of insider social observations that sting as much as they amuse.”

A New York Times feature on contributing writers’ favorite restaurants quotes Candace Nelson on Fairmont’s Country Club Bakery, and mentions her WVU book The West Virginia Pepperoni Roll.

As the higher education community reflects on the past semester—and makes plans for the next—WVU’s books about teaching and learning continue to shape the conversation: 

  • In a major Los Angeles Review of Books essay on “Universities in the Age of COVID-19,” Ryan Boyd writes that Kevin Gannon’s Radical Hope “make[s] it clear what the stakes are, and which path we should sprint down, right now, if we want to live and maybe even thrive.” Gannon talks with Inside Higher Ed about grading during the pandemic, and appears on the Phoenix Thriving podcast.
  • Jessamyn Neuhaus, author of Geeky Pedagogy, writes in the Chronicle of Higher Education about the challenges that introverts face when engaging in remote teaching.
  • In Disability Studies Quarterly, Thomas Tobin and Kirsten Behling’s Reach Everyone, Teach Everyone earns praise for “sparking new ways of conceptualizing and creating inclusive access.”
  • And Joshua Eyler, author of How Humans Learn, joins editors and reporters from the Chronicle of Higher Education in a webinar on “Better Student Engagement during Covid-19.” The event is June 5, and registration is here.

Carter Sickels curates a selection of rural queer fiction for Literary Hub, including Jonathan Corcoran’s “exquisite” collection The Rope Swing.

The Portland Press Herald profiles Meredith McCarroll, highlighting her book with WVU Press. “It was Appalachian Reckoning that established McCarroll as a strong, contemporary advocate for the mountains.”

In No Depression, Henry Carrigan writes: “Thank goodness . . . that we now have Travis D. Stimeling’s Songwriting in Contemporary West Virginia to introduce us to the wealth and diversity of songwriting in the state.”

Rosemary Hathaway’s Mountaineers Are Always Free is called “essential reading for any student of West Virginia history” in the Beckley Register-Herald.

Ohio Valley History calls Amanda Hayes’s The Politics of Appalachian Rhetoric “a gently delivered, but no less damning, critique of academia’s anti-Appalachian prejudice.”

J. L. Anderson’s “textured, complex” Capitalist Pigs receives attention from the Des Moines Register, and is called “a book that helps us unravel the great environmental crises of our times” in Climate and Capitalism.

The Journal of Historical Geography praises the “fascinating analysis” in Elvin Wyly’s Geography’s Quantitative Revolutions.

In the Luso-Brazilian Review, Marcus Wood’s The Black Butterfly is praised for its “accessible, engaging, and indeed sometimes almost poetic prose” and called a “significant contribution to Brazilian literary studies and comparative race studies.”

Beyond Populism is called “extraordinary and timely” in Midwest Book Review.

In the first published review of Lana K. W. Austin’s Like Light, Like MusicForeword Reviews judges it “a novel full of divergences that pursues the loves, lives, and lore of kith and kin.”

The podcast Kentucky History talks with Wesley Browne about his book Hillbilly Hustle.

Public health concerns continue to limit events with WVU Press authors, but we’re pleased to announce that Deesha Philyaw, author of our forthcoming The Secret Lives of Church Ladies, will join Damon Young, author of What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker, in a virtual conversation hosted by Pittsburgh’s White Whale Books. Watch for details about this June 19 event. And on June 30, the Virginia Festival of the Book will host an online event with editors and contributors involved with our LGBTQ Fiction and Poetry from Appalachia.

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