Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Author of KLANDESTINE to speak at the National Civil Rights Museum

Posted By on Tue, Mar 29, 2016 at 11:27 AM

Journalist Pate McMichael, author of KLANDESTINE: How a Klan Lawyer and a Checkbook Journalist Helped James Earl Ray Cover Up His Crime (Chicago Review Press) will discuss his book as part of the National Civil Rights Museum’s Book & Author Series. This event is free and open to the public.

On April 4, 1968, while standing on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed by a single bullet fired from an elevated and concealed position. Almost half a century later, unanswered questions surround the circumstances of his demise, and many still wonder whether justice was served.

After all, only one man, an escaped convict from Missouri named James Earl Ray, was punished for the crime. On the surface, Ray did not fit the caricature of a hangdog racist thirsty for blood. Media coverage has often portrayed him as hapless and apolitical, someone who must have been paid by clandestine forces. It’s a narrative that Ray himself put in motion upon his June 1968 arrest in London, then continued from jail until his death in 1998. In 1999, Dr. King’s own family declared Ray an innocent man.

After his arrest, Ray forged a publishing partnership with two very strange bedfellows: a slick Klan lawyer named Arthur J. Hanes, the de facto “Klonsel” for the United Klans of America; and checkbook journalist William Bradford Huie, the darling of Look magazine and a longtime menace of the KKK. Despite polar opposite views on race, Hanes and Huie found common cause in the world of conspiracy. Together, they thought they could make Memphis the new Dallas.

Relying on novel primary source discoveries gathered over an eight-year period, including a trove of newly released documents and dusty files, KLANDESTINE takes readers deep inside Ray’s Memphis jail cell and Alabama’s violent Klaverns. Told through Hanes and Huie’s key perspectives, it shows how a legacy of unpunished racial killings provided the perfect exigency to sell a lucrative conspiracy to a suspicious and outraged nation. 

McMichael is an award-winning journalist. His stories have been published in Atlanta magazine, Saint Louis magazine, Zócalo Public Square, and elsewhere.  

Pate McMichael
Thursday, March 31st
6 - 8 p.m.
National Civil Rights Museum (Hooks Hyde Hall)
450 Mulberry Street

Friday, March 25, 2016

Bill Haltom book signing postponed

Posted By on Fri, Mar 25, 2016 at 10:45 AM

Due to a death in the family, Bill Haltom has had to cancel the book signing scheduled for Saturday, March 26h, at Burke's Book Store.

A later date will be named in the near future and we will keep you up to date.

Milk & Sugar: The Complete Story of Seersucker (Nautilus Publishing)  traces the origin of the seersucker suit from its humble beginnings to its rise as a darling of both men’s and women’s haute couture. It examines its role in Southern culture from courtrooms and law offices, churches and synagogues, fraternity row and sorority rush, tasteful garden gatherings to raucous fundraisers. Along the way, Haltom also outlines the regional “rules” of wearing and accessorizing seersucker and its embrace by fashionistas and celebrities from New York City to Hollywood.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Bill Haltom and the story of seersucker coming to Burke's Books

Posted By on Tue, Mar 22, 2016 at 1:38 PM


Milk & Sugar: The Complete Story of Seersucker (Nautilus Publishing) by Bill Haltom, an award-winning author, columnist and attorney, is set for release on Saturday, March 26th. Haltom will be at Burke’s Book Store that day from 2 – 4 p.m. for a book signing.


Milk & Sugar traces the origin of the seersucker suit from its humble beginnings to its rise as a darling of both men’s and women’s haute couture. It examines its role in Southern culture from courtrooms and law offices, churches and synagogues, fraternity row and sorority rush, tasteful garden gatherings to raucous fundraisers. Along the way, Haltom also outlines the regional “rules” of wearing and accessorizing seersucker and its embrace by fashionistas and celebrities from New York City to Hollywood.


The book is being published with the blessing of Laurie Haspel Aronson, CEO of Hansel of New Orleans and great-granddaughter of the originator of the seersucker suit.


For over 25 years, Haltom has been a newspaper and magazine humorist as well as author of five previous books. He has chaired editorial boards for four magazines, including the ABA Journal, the flagship publication of the American Bar Association. He practices law in Memphis and is a frequent speaker at conventions, banquets and leadership seminars.


“I had to figure out a way to combine two loves — writing and my seersucker suits — so I was compelled to do a book,” Haltom says. “I have long been fascinated with how seersucker seems to bring a sort of civility to any gathering, while also being a sort of wink towards playful, yet high, fashion.”


Bill Haltom

Saturday, March 26th

2 - 4 p.m.

Burke’s Book Store

936 South Cooper Street

Tags: , , , ,

Monday, March 21, 2016

Chris Offutt, the pornographer's son, to read at story booth

Posted By on Mon, Mar 21, 2016 at 1:39 PM


When Andrew Offutt died, his son, Chris, inherited a desk, a rifle, and 1,800 pounds of pornographic fiction. Andrew had been considered the king of twentieth-century smut, with a writing career that began as a strategy to pay for his son’s orthodontic needs and soon took on a life of its own, peaking during the 1970s when the commercial popularity of the erotic novel reached its height. With his dutiful wife serving as typist, Andrew wrote from their home in the Kentucky hills, locked away in an office no one dared intrude upon. In this fashion, he wrote more than 400 novels, including pirate porn, ghost porn, zombie porn, and secret agent porn. The more he wrote, the more intense his ambition became and the more difficult it was for his children to be part of his world.


Over the long summer of 2013, Chris returned to his hometown to help his widowed mother move out of his childhood home. As he began to examine his father’s manuscripts and memorabilia, journals, and letters, he realized he finally had an opportunity to gain insight into the difficult, mercurial, sometimes cruel man he’d loved and feared in equal measure. Only in his father’s absence could he truly make sense of the man and his legacy.


In My Father, the Pornographer, Offutt takes us on the journey with him, reading his father’s prodigious literary output as both a critic and as a son seeking answers. This is a book about the life of a working writer who supports his family solely by the output of his typewriter; it’s about the awful psychic burdens one generation unthinkingly passes along to the next; and it’s about growing up in the Appalachian hills with a pack of fearless boys riding bicycles through the woods, happy and free.


“A literary detective story interwoven with memories of a youth riddled with sexual confusion and inarticulate yearning. . . . There is a touching universality to his tale and its mix of longing and despair . . . . In the end, the value of this haunting account lies in Offutt’s refusal to find a pat moral in his journey.” — The Washington Post


Chris Offutt is an award-winning author and screenwriter. He worked on the HBO drama True Blood and the Showtime series Weeds. His books include Kentucky StraightThe Same River TwiceThe Good BrotherOut of the Woods, and No Heroes: A Memoir of Coming Home. His work has appeared in The Best American EssaysThe Best American Short Stories, and many other anthologies. He lives near Oxford, Mississippi.


Chris Offutt

Thursday, March 24th

6 p.m.

story booth @ Crosstown Arts

438 N. Cleveland

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Dog behaviorist Bryan Bailey to speak at Booksellers

Posted By on Thu, Mar 17, 2016 at 1:19 PM

Dog trainer and Memphian Bryan Bailey's new book, Embracing the Wild in Your Dog, is about developing a deep understanding of the authors of your dog's behavior-nature and the wolf. By doing so, you will learn the whys and hows of its behavior and how activating and deactivating the natural, wolf-like impulses and mechanisms in your dog will lead to the harmonious existence and the control you always dreamed of. Most of all, you will come to embrace the wild in your dog and the grace and the peace that is breathed into its acceptance.

​"[T]his book represents much more than a simple training guide. There is an undeniable power and beauty to the author's musings as he weaves into the text vital lessons learned from his mentor during intense survival training in the Alaskan wilderness. A firm response to currently accepted dog-training methods."  — Kirkus Reviews

Raised in Fairbanks, Alaska, Bailey grew to appreciate the wildness of the land and its abundant wildlife. In particular, he developed a fondness for the gray wolves that roamed the vast mountain ranges and forests near his home. Under the guidance of a Special Forces Survival Instructor, he spent years studying the social interactions of wolves in their packs and discovered that, beyond obvious physical similarities, there were also behavioral similarities between the wolves and the sled dogs that were his family’s pets. Bryan has traveled to over thirty countries in Europe, Africa, the jungles of southeast Asia and the remote regions above the arctic circle in his pursuit of learning the behaviors of hyenas, lions, tigers and the gray wolf, with an emphasis on how instinct, passed from the gray wolf, has affected the behavior of our domestic dogs.

Bailey and wife Kira own ProTrain Memphis and Taming the Wild in Memphis. From their website: "A nationally-recognized, award-winning author and behaviorist, Bryan has studied wolf and other predatory behaviors worldwide. He has been featured on CNN, 'Fox & Friends,' SiriusXM radio, 'Talk of Alabama,' WREG TV-3, and in many publications, including Dog World, At Home Mid-South Tennessee, Bloom Magazine, HOSS magazine, SheKnows, The Chicago Tribune and the Miami Herald. Veterinarians, dog owners and celebrities such as John Mellencamp, James Fitzpatrick, the late Junior Seau, Julio Jones and many others have eagerly sought out his services." 

Bryan Bailey
The Booksellers at Laurelwood
Saturday, March 19th
2:00 p.m.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Author Stephen V. Ash to speak at Rhodes

Posted By on Tue, Mar 15, 2016 at 12:27 PM

In May 1866, a year after the Civil War ended, the city of Memphis erupted in a three-day spasm of racial violence aimed at the recently-freed African Americans who lived there. More than 40 black men and women were murdered, many more injured, and all of the city’s black schools and churches and many homes destroyed by fire. It was the first large-scale racial massacre to erupt in the post-Civil War South, impacting subsequent federal policies and constitutional law.

On March 17th at 6 p.m., in the McCallum Ballroom, Bryan Campus Life Center at Rhodes College (reception at 5:30 p.m.), Dr. Stephen V. Ash will speak about his book A Massacre in Memphis. Ash is a professor
emeritus of history at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and has published many books relating to the dynamic, racial interplay in the Civil War and post-Civil War South. He takes special interest in Tennessee

His lecture at Rhodes, which is part of the college’s “Communities in Conversation” lecture series, will examine the origins of the Memphis riot, describe its horrific violence, assess its significance in American history, and especially its importance to Memphis as a city. This event is free and open to the public and will be
followed by a book signing.

Ash’s book gives a portrait of Memphis as a southern city in the immediate aftermath of the civil war. It was a
time when racial tensions were high and there was talk of the Emancipation Proclamation as an abomination
by “Rebel Memphis” and their Irish supporters. Most whites resented the influx of blacks into the city and
especially the presence of black federal troops and Yankees who had come to assist the recently freed
slaves. By spring of 1866, tensions were high and riots and racially incited murder ensued. Congress
eventually blamed them on “the intense hatred of the freed people by the city’s whites, especially the Irish — a hatred stoked by the Rebel newspapers.”

“Meticulous . . . Ash offers remarkable portraits of ordinary Memphians . . . caught up in the tumult of their
time . . . riveting.”— Kirkus (starred review)

“This detailed account of the lengthy riot and its reverberations surges at the reader . . . For those who want
to understand the roots of America's racial issues, Ash's captivating and thoughtful book offers explanations
and raises many new questions.” — Publishers Weekly

The Memphis Massacre is one of the best-documented episodes of American history in the nineteenth
century. And yet it remains little known today, even by Memphians. This event is part of a semester-long
effort to commemorate the Memphis Massacre, headed up by University of Memphis historians Beverly Bond
and Susan O’Donovan. They are working with a slew of community partners, including the National Park
Service and the Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area, and Humanities Tennessee. The goal of this
communal series of events is to shatter the silence about the Memphis Massacre and to mark this moment
as a turning point in Memphis, Southern, and American history. Ash’s lecture will be an important occasion in
this set of events.

Ash was awarded the UT Alexander Prize for Distinguished Research and Teaching in 2005, and the UT
Chancellor’s Award for Research and Creative Achievement in 2004. Rhodes College is excited to have him
deepen our understanding of the history of our city.

Find Communities in Conversation on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram.

Dr. Stephen V. Ash
Thursday, March 17, 2016
6 p.m. (reception at 5:30 p.m.)
McCallum Ballroom (Bryan Campus Life Center)
Rhodes College

Tags: , ,

© 1996-2019

Contemporary Media
460 Tennessee Street, 2nd Floor | Memphis, TN 38103
Visit our other sites: Memphis Magazine | Memphis Parent | Inside Memphis Business
Powered by Foundation