In this periodic feature, we highlight books either about Alabama people or events or written by Alabama authors. Summaries are not reviews or endorsements. We also occasionally highlight book-related events. Email submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org. Due to the volume of submissions, we are unable to feature all the books we receive.
Sixteen and Counting: The National Championships of Alabama Football, edited and with an introduction by Kenneth Gaddy, University of Alabama Press, $24.95 (sports) The book features dramatic accounts of every University of Alabama National Championship football season, recounted by noted sports writers, players and Alabamians.
Once You Know This, by Emily Blejwas, Random House/Delacorte Press, $16.99 (middle grade readers) Eleven-year-old Brittany knows there has to be a better world out there. At home, her granny is sick, her cat is missing, there’s never any money, and a little brother to worry about. Once she starts believing in herself, she realizes what has always seemed out of reach might be just around the corner. The author lives in Mobile and the novel is set in part in Montgomery.
Grandeur of the Everyday: The Paintings of Dale Kennington, University of Alabama Press, $29.95 (art) The book is a lavishly illustrated overview of the life and work of realist painter Dale Kennington, who called Dothan home for most of her life. The book features more than 85 of her most renowned works, and has an introduction by Daniel White, an interview by Kristen Miller Zohn and an essay by Rebecca Brantley.
An Irresistible History of Alabama Barbecue, by Mark R. Johnson, ArcadiaPublishing and The History Press, $21.99 (food) From Muscle Shoals to Mobile, Alabamians enjoy fabulous barbecue. In the 1820s, however, a group of reformers wanted to eliminate the Southern staple because politicians used it toentice voters. The author traces the development of the state’s famous food from the earliest settlement of the state to the rise of barbecue restaurants.
Archipelagoes of My South: Episodes in the Shaping of a Region, 1830-1965, by J. Mills Thornton III, University of Alabama Press, $59.95 (Southern culture) This collection of essays by historian Thornton, a native of Montgomery, represents 45 years of reflection on the central problems of Southern history, bound together by a common concern with defining the crucial interaction of race and class in the formation of Southern politics and life.