Southern Scribe
    our culture of storytelling


Literary Criticism Review    



From A Race of Storytellers:
The Ballad Novels of Sharyn McCrumb
Kimberly M. Holloway, editor
Includes an essay by Sharon McCrumb
Mercer University Press, 2003
188 pages
ISBN: 0-86554-853-6; cloth $45.00
ISBN: 0-86554-893-5; paper $18.00

One of the great pleasures in reading Sharon McCrumb's novels is the way in which she effortlessly weaves Appalachian folklore, myth, language patterns, traditional music, and culture into the story. 

From A Race of Storytellers is intended for both teachers who use Appalachian Mountain literature in their classes as well as general readers. The fourteen scholarly essays not only examine what it means to live in Appalachia, they also attempt to offer the reader a deeper understanding of McCrumb's novels. Their goal is to "move beyond the popular image of the culture. 

The book offers literary criticism and interpretation in addition to practical suggestions for teaching the ballad novels. Sharon McCrumb's essay, "Keepers of the Legends," opens the book and addresses, eloquently, the hows and whys of the reasons she became a writer. 

Kimberly M. Holloway, the book's editor, grew up in Cookeville, Tennessee and is now Associate Director of Communications and Lecturer in English at King College in Bristol, Tennessee. She attended Tennessee Technical College and East Tennessee State University. She currently lives in Johnson City, Tennessee and has two daughters, Jennifer and Stephanie. 

Pam Kingsbury
Southern Scribe Reviews

2003, Southern Scribe Reviews, All Rights Reserved