Author Event: Dale Neal & Evan Williams
Page 158 Books welcomes authors Dale Neal, author of APPALACHIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, and Evan Williams, author of RIPPLES, in conversation.
About APPALACHIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD: A psychopathic killer disappears into the mountains and haunts the troubled residents. After the murderous Angel Jones escapes from a prison work crew, he mysteriously vanishes deep into the North Carolina woods. With no body and no knowledge of his whereabouts, newcomers Cal and Joy McAlister are left to deal with his lingering presence. Burdened with their own grief, guilt, and unfilled dreams, Cal and Joy are joined by other haunted residents: an oddball handyman and a young detoxing neighbor. With Angel’s menacing specter around every corner, each of them brings their private ghosts to life and gives their worst fears flesh.
About RIPPLES: In a small town swollen with secrets, a young boy puzzles his way through a minefield of societal expectations and Southern Baptist status quo. Ben Bramley has been granted an idyllic upbringing in a scenic mountain hamlet. With one set of grandparents living next door and the other a mile away, both family lines are involved in the area's widespread apple-growing heritage. But within this close-knit community, privacy is an illusion. When the promises of his faith fail him, Ben struggles alone with an unrecognizable life and becomes the unwitting repository of weighty secrets. Complex relationships fuel a story in which hypocrisy is an art form, change is impossible, and love is destructive.
A North Carolina native, Dale Neal is the author of the novels APPALACHIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, THE HALF-LIFE OF HOME, and COW ACROSS AMERICA, all set in the storied Blue Ridge Mountains. For many years, he was a prize-winning writer for the Asheville Citizen-Times. A graduate of Warren Wilson College’s MFA Program, his short fiction and essays have appeared in Arts & Letters, Carolina Quarterly, Marlboro Review, Crescent Review, and others. He currently teaches fiction at the Lenoir-Rhyne University Graduate Center in Asheville, where he lives with his wife and dogs. For more information, please visit dalenealbooks.com.
Evan Williams entered his first writing competition in sixth grade, a county-wide agricultural conservation essay contest, and won second place along with a nifty plaque. RIPPLES draws heavily on his family's multigenerational applegrowing business. Surrounded by orchards, Evan writes from within a former apple storage shed—the same shed where he would steal away as a boy to enjoy quality reading time.