Friday, June 22, 2018
Books

What's Steph Post reading?

Nightstand

Steph Post

Post, 35, grew up until the age of 10 across the street from St. Augustine's famed Alligator Farm. Then her family moved to rural St. John's County. "I was fascinated with that part of Florida. Everything about that rural lifestyle permeates my writing now,'' she said. "The family seems to be so important, and sometimes people's backgrounds are questionable, and it's about that feeling of being tied to the land.''

Post, who holds a degree in English from Davidson College and a master's in liberal studies from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, lives in St. Petersburg. She will be a featured author at this year's Times Festival of Reading, where she will discuss her recent book, Lightwood. The novel is set in the fictional town of Silas, a 20-mile walk from the Florida State Prison in Starke.

What's on your nightstand?

For my new book I'm doing research on the 1890s. It is a completely different genre for me. It takes place in 1894. So for that I have Gangs of New York by Herbert Asbury. It is what Daniel Day Lewis' movie was based on. I also just read Carmen Maria Machado's Her Body and Other Parties. It is an advance copy, but it is getting a lot of buzz.

Did something about it grab you?

Her writing is haunting. It's not always easy to get into short story collections. I'm much more a reader of novels, but from her first story it was all very visceral. And then, there is another book that I'm looking forward to reading, Wiley Cash's new book, The Last Ballad. It comes out in October. Anything Wiley Cash writes I want to read.

What should first-timers of Cash check out?

A Land More Kind Than Home. It is jaw-dropping and Southern.

How did you pick Asbury's book?

I'm actually surprised I'm reading it. I was restructuring something and working on a new character that I knew would be from America, and like most of my characters, this one was borderline criminal. The location for what I was working on needed to be on the eastern seaboard. Honestly, It seems that when I write, I naturally gravitate to film for inspiration, and because I'm kind of obsessed with Daniel Day Lewis, I thought of the movie and discovered there was an actual book.

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

Comments
Review: Look inside the tent of a Gibsonton-based sideshow in Tessa Fontaine’s memoir ‘The Electric Woman’

Review: Look inside the tent of a Gibsonton-based sideshow in Tessa Fontaine’s memoir ‘The Electric Woman’

Grief can unhinge us, disconnect us from our daily lives, make us do things we’ve never done. Grief made Tessa Fontaine run away and join the circus.To be more exact, the sideshow: World of Wonders, the last traditional traveling sideshow in the coun...
Published: 06/21/18
5 fiction writers who've turned their attention to Donald Trump

5 fiction writers who've turned their attention to Donald Trump

He might not have intended it, but Donald Trump has been good for book publishing.
Published: 06/15/18
What’s Neal Thompson, author of ‘Kickflip Boys,’ reading?

What’s Neal Thompson, author of ‘Kickflip Boys,’ reading?

Neal ThompsonFor Father’s Day, we checked in with Neal Thompson from his Seattle office. In his new book, Kickflip Boys, Thompson weaves together a story on raising his two independent, passionate sons while giving us an honest look at the underbelly...
Published: 06/15/18
What is Jen Waite, author of the memoir

What is Jen Waite, author of the memoir "A Beautiful, Terrible Thing," reading?

Jen Waite It is June. Romance and weddings are in the air, and with that comes the paperback release of A Beautiful, Terrible Thing: A Memoir of Marriage and Betrayal by Jen Waite, 33. The book, based on Waite’s heartbreaking wedding story, fi...
Published: 06/07/18
Review: Jake Tapper’s ‘Hellfire Club’ a fictional thriller sharpened with real 1950s politics

Review: Jake Tapper’s ‘Hellfire Club’ a fictional thriller sharpened with real 1950s politics

Washington, D.C., is a city in crisis, the operations of the federal government all but paralyzed by the conspiracy theories of a powerful politician who behaves as if the bounds of protocol and decency don’t apply to him. As he distracts the nation,...
Updated one month ago
What’s Helen Rappaport reading?

What’s Helen Rappaport reading?

Helen RappaportWhile delving into archives and researching her new book about the murder of the Russian imperial family 100 years ago, The Race to Save the Romanovs, Rappaport celebrated the digital age. "I am able to go back so far in time and look ...
Updated one month ago
Review: Lauren Groff’s ‘Florida’ explores a state beyond the boundaries

Review: Lauren Groff’s ‘Florida’ explores a state beyond the boundaries

In "Flower Hunters," one of the stories in Lauren Groff’s stunning new book Florida, a character gets a reader’s crush on 18th century explorer William Bartram, an early chronicler of the state’s flora and fauna: "She’s most d...
Updated one month ago
Notable: Books for the beach

Notable: Books for the beach

NotableBooks for the beachSuit up: It’s time for a few new books built for vacation reading.By Invitation Only (William Morrow) by Dorothea Benton Frank is the latest serving of Frank’s trademark warm humor and engaging characters, set around two wed...
Updated one month ago
Judy Blundell brings on summertime on Long Island in ‘High Season’

Judy Blundell brings on summertime on Long Island in ‘High Season’

NightstandJudy BlundellSince it’s Memorial Day weekend, we decided to touch base with Judy Blundell, whose new book is High Season. The novel’s protagonist is Ruthie Beamish, director of a small museum who, to make ends meet, rents out her seaside ho...
Updated one month ago

Events: Pulitzer winner Jack Davis to discuss ‘The Gulf’ at Oxford Exchange

Book TalkUniversity of Florida historian Jack E. Davis (The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea) will discuss and sign his Pulitzer Prize-winning book at 1 p.m. May 27 at the Oxford Exchange, 420 W Kennedy Blvd., Tampa. Admission $5, applicable towar...
Updated one month ago