What if we all read the same book? A great book about displacement, marginalization, grace and victory? And what if we then had a chance to talk to others who had read the book, and to the person who wrote the book? That would be pretty cool. And Reader Meet Writer is making it happen.
This fall the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance is launching “One Book, One South” – a Southern-wide book club discussion taking place at independent bookstores across the South and online at ReaderMeetWriter.com – the indie bookstore website for southern literary news, gossip and book culture.
The book chosen as the inaugural pick for One Book, One South is Citizens Creek by Lalita Tademy, highlighted below. Pick up a copy from your favorite Indie bookstore, read it during the month and join us online for a Q&A with the author on November 20th at 8p.m. You can sign up here!
The New York Times bestselling author of the Oprah Book Club Pick Cane River brings us the evocative story of a once-enslaved man who buys his freedom after serving as a translator during the American Indian Wars, and his granddaughter, who sustains his legacy of courage.
Cow Tom, born into slavery in Alabama in 1810 and sold to a Creek Indian chief before his tenth birthday, possessed an extraordinary gift: the ability to master languages. As the new country developed westward, and Indians, settlers, and blacks came into constant contact, Cow Tom became a key translator for his Creek master and was hired out to US military generals. His talent earned him money—but would it also grant him freedom? And what would become of him and his family in the aftermath of the Civil War and the Indian Removal westward?
Cow Tom’s legacy lives on—especially in the courageous spirit of his granddaughter Rose. She rises to leadership of the family as they struggle against political and societal hostility intent on keeping blacks and Indians oppressed. But through it all, her grandfather’s indelible mark of courage inspires her—in mind, in spirit, and in a family legacy that never dies.
Written in two parts portraying the parallel lives of Cow Tom and Rose, Citizens Creek is a beautifully rendered novel that takes the reader deep into a little known chapter of American history. It is a breathtaking tale of identity, community, family—and above all, the power of an individual’s will to make a difference.