Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Re-Visiting Atlanta

Atlanta is one of my favorite places where I've never lived. Love visiting. Feels like a second home. In fact, most of my high school classmates are now Atlanta residents. Too bad for Detroit, but to my friends Atlanta seems to offer something special for black college grads.

The city is also home to many authors, and it's also the setting for many of my favorite books. Such a rich history, all the spoken and unspoken rules, the dynamic black community. No wonder Atlanta is the backdrop for many great books.

In my opinion, Pearl Cleage's novels are some of the best out there. And you just can't help but love how she describes the loves, lives, struggles, and triumphs of the black community. Too many novels to name and love. Check out her website to find a good starting point. But I'm excited she has a new one slated for release in early 2008, Seen It All And Done The Rest.

The Atlanta child murders of the late 1970s is still etched in the memory of Atlanta residents and the U.S. There is a new book, No Safe Place, a memoir by Kim Reid, which chronicles her life growing up as the daughter of one of the lead investigators. It's gotten some great reviews and press.

And of course, if you want a fiction story set during the same time period of the Atlanta child murders, you can't go wrong with Leaving Atlanta by Tayari Jones. Read this as part of a book club a few years back. Her second novel, The Untelling, is another set in Atlanta that is a classic.

Of course, newbie Fiona Zedde is from Atlanta. And there are two fabulous independent bookstores I love in the city -- Charis and Outwrite.

I'm sure there are many MANY other Atlanta-based authors and books I'm not mentioning. If you're so inclined, what or who are some of your favorites from Atlanta? And... would you recommend Atlanta to someone from L.A. considering it as a potential move?

But focus on the books part first :-)

1 comment:

LadyLee said...

I think you said it all when you did this post... I love both Pearl Cleage's and Tayari's books. No one brings the ATL to life like they do.

I love the ATL, and didn't appreciate it until I moved away for a job. I got back as fast as I could, and would recommend it to anyone...

Glad you enjoyed your time here!