FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(SAVANNAH, GA) Winner of the Southern Book Critics Circle Award and an Academy Award in Fiction from American Academy of Arts and Letters, fiction writer Lee Smith will appear at the Fourth Annual Savannah Book Festival, in a presentation that will be free and open to the public on Saturday, February 19, 2011. Smith will present her latest book of short stories, Mrs. Darcy and the Blue Eyed Stranger, and talk about her life in letters, after which she will field questions from the audience.
Mrs. Darcy and the Blue Eyed Stranger, Smith’s newest in thirteen years, collects fourteen stories: seven brand-new ones along with seven favorites from her three earlier collections. Famous for unmistakable voices and a craft so strong and sure it seems effortless, Lee Smith’s stories strike dead center at the turning points of her characters’ lives. Here those characters range from an eight-year-old boy obsessed with vocabulary words and a young bride who has married “way up” to Mrs. Darcy herself, an older woman making it through widowhood her own way.
Lee Smith was born in 1944 in Grundy, Virginia, a small coal-mining town in the Blue Ridge Mountains, not ten miles from the Kentucky border. The sense of place infusing her novels reveals her insight into and empathy for the people and culture of Appalachia. Since 1968, she has published eleven novels as well as three collections of short stories.
The Savannah Book Festival’s mission is to promote reading, writing and civil conversation. It is now a significant event in both the literary and southeastern USA calendars, with a new date this year: February 18-20, 2011 – President’s Day weekend. The Savannah Book Festival Inc. is an independent non-profit corporation led by a volunteer board of directors. It is committed to remaining free and open to the public and to celebrating the written word and its role in improving the human experience.