Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Books

What's Rita Williams-Garcia reading?

RECOMMENDED READING


Nightstand

Rita Williams-Garcia

YA novelist Rita Williams-Garcia recently received a Coretta Scott King Book Award for Gone Crazy in Alabama. This is the third time Williams-Garcia has received the prestigious award for a book in her One Crazy Summer series, which follows sisters Delphine, Vonetta and Fern as they navigate life in the turbulent 1960s. Williams-Garcia lives in Queens, N.Y., and is on the faculty at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in the writing for children and young adults program.

What's on your nightstand?

First, I love poetry so I'm reading Terrance Hayes' Lighthead. I think the poems that stand out are Golden Shovel and one called Hide. He's just a genius. I'm in awe of him. I've also got The Good Lord Bird by James McBride. He won the National Book Award for it. The premise is wonderful. There's a boy trying to escape (slavery), but he's mistaken as a girl. He has to play a charade, in order to get to where he is going. There are so many things going on while this is happening. The abolitionist John Brown is in this. It's a different slant of telling history.

Did he do a good job with John Brown?

So far, I'm only hearing about John Brown. I haven't seen him yet, but the way the author does it is something that I want to achieve when I write historical fiction. It feels like you are in the time — the way people talk about well-known people. They don't have the significance we attach to them, although they are aware of what their role is. It's kind of like the way my mother used to talk about celebrities. My mother talked about Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor like they were the girls down the street. That's what James does. He puts these people in our hands. We can picture them. We know people don't have reverence for them yet.

What authors would you recommend for your middle school readers? Who has strong characters?

Jacqueline Woodson, Sharon Flake and also Coe Booth. In Tyrell, she gets in the head of a young man who is pushed to his limits. She also has a book called Kendra, about a young girl trying to make sense of her life. There's also X by Ilyasah Shabazz, who is Malcom X's daughter, and Kekla Magoon. It's riveting.

Contact Piper Castillo at [email protected] Follow @Florida_PBJC.

Comments
How ‘A Christmas Carol’ was born

How ‘A Christmas Carol’ was born

Charles Dickens’ best-known and most beloved book almost didn’t happen. In 1843, Dickens, then 31, was already dealing with the downside of international success. He had followed bestsellers like Oliver Twist with several flops and was s...
Updated: 2 hours ago
What to watch this week: ‘Marvel’s Runaways,’ ‘Godless,’ Thanksgiving specials

What to watch this week: ‘Marvel’s Runaways,’ ‘Godless,’ Thanksgiving specials

MondayDavid Letterman: The Mark Twain Prize, 9 p.m., PBS: A special celebrating the work of Late Night and The Late Show host David Letterman.SERIES PREMIERE: Big Hero 6 the Series, 8 p.m., Disney Channel: The new animated series takes place after th...
Published: 11/20/17
Video: Forget Pizza Rat. Meet St. Petersburg’s Pizza Squirrel

Video: Forget Pizza Rat. Meet St. Petersburg’s Pizza Squirrel

New York, it seems, doesn't have a monopoly on pizza-chomping rodents.Around 2:45 p.m. Friday, the Tampa Bay Times spotted a squirrel digging a nearly entire slice of pizza out of a trash can at 146 Second St. N in St. Petersburg. The squirrel hoppe...
Published: 11/17/17
Here are this week’s pop culture winners and losers

Here are this week’s pop culture winners and losers

WINNERS:Taylor SwiftFollowing the death of his mother, Gloria, The Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon shared a touching story with the audience about his mom squeezing his hand three times and saying "I love you," when he was a kid. "Last week, I was in ...
Published: 11/17/17
Review: ‘Marvel’s Runaways’ pits rebellious teens against their evil parents

Review: ‘Marvel’s Runaways’ pits rebellious teens against their evil parents

The parents in Runaways really are the worst.Hulu's new Marvel series follows a ragtag group of teenagers who have to band together to defeat their own parents, who are collective members of a secret criminal organization called the Pride.In the wake...
Published: 11/17/17
What to watch this weekend: ‘The Punisher,’ ‘Search Party,’ Elizabeth Smart Lifetime movie

What to watch this weekend: ‘The Punisher,’ ‘Search Party,’ Elizabeth Smart Lifetime movie

GRIEF AND GUNS: THE PUNISHERMarvel fans first saw Marine veteran Frank Castle (Jon Bernthal) in Netflix's Daredevil series. The brutish anti-hero finally gets his own series with The Punisher, exploring what he did after helping Daredevil (Charlie Co...
Published: 11/17/17
Jesmyn Ward wins National Book Award for ‘Sing, Unburied, Sing’

Jesmyn Ward wins National Book Award for ‘Sing, Unburied, Sing’

Jesmyn Ward is having a good year.At a glamorous ceremony Wednesday night in New York, Ward was named the winner of the 2017 National Book Award for Sing, Unburied, Sing, about a Mississippi family's epic road trip. The book is Ward's third novel ...
Published: 11/16/17
Review: George Saunders’ ‘Sea Oak’ makes a dead-funny TV comedy

Review: George Saunders’ ‘Sea Oak’ makes a dead-funny TV comedy

Recently, George Saunders won the Man Booker Prize, one of the world’s most prestigious literary awards.And now he has a TV show about zombies!Saunders, one of America’s best writers of fiction, won the 2017 Booker for his splendid novel Lincoln in t...
Published: 11/16/17

Events: Tampa historians to sign books at hurricane relief benefit

Book TalkNancy Christie (Rut-Busting Book for Writers) will sign her book at 11 a.m. Nov. 20 at 321 Books, 6901 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg.John Cinchett (Vintage Tampa Storefronts and Scenes), Rex Gordon (History of Hillsborough High School), Linda ...
Published: 11/16/17
What’s Elaine M. Hayes reading?

What’s Elaine M. Hayes reading?

NightstandElaine M. HayesHayes, the author of Queen of Bebop: The Musical Lives of Sarah Vaughan, said she was a college student when Vaughan’s voice first captivated her. "My roommate played a lot of her in our daily life. I remember thinking that s...
Published: 11/16/17