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Featuring the work of twenty-five fiction writers and poets, this anthology is a captivating introduction to the finest of contemporary Appalachian literature. Here are short stories and poems by some of the region's most dynamic and best-loved authors: Barbara Kingsolver, Ron Rash, Nikki Giovanni, Robert Morgan, Lisa Alther, and Lee Smith among others. In addition to compelling selections from each writer's work, the book includes illuminating biographical sketches and bibliographies for each author. These works encompass a variety of themes that, collectively, capture the essence of Appalachia: love of the land, family ties, and the struggle to blend progress with heritage. Readers will enjoy this book not just for the innate value of good literature but also for the insights it provides into this fascinating area. This book of fiction is an enlightening companion to non-fiction overviews of the region, including the Encyclopedia of Appalachiaand A Handbook to Appalachia: An Introduction to the Region, both published by the University of Tennessee Press in 2006. In fact the five sections of this book are the same as those of the Encyclopedia. Educators and students will find this book especially appropriate for courses in creative writing, Appalachian studies and Appalachian literature. Editor George Brosi's foreword presents an historical overview of Appalachian Literature, while Kate Egerton and Morgan Cottrell's afterword offers a helpful guide for studying Appalachian literature in a classroom setting. George Brosi is the editor of Appalachian Heritage, a literary quarterly, and, along with his wife, Connie, runs a retail book business specializing in books from and about the Appalachian region. He has taught creative writing, Appalachian studies and Appalachian literature. Kate Egerton is an associate professor of English at Berea College. She has taught Appalachian literature and published scholarship in that field as well as in modern drama. Samantha Cole majored in Appalachian Studies and worked for Appalachian Heritagewhile a student at Berea College. Morgan Cottrell is a West Virginia native who took Kate Egerton's Appalachian literature class at Berea College.