Square Books presents: A conversation with Minrose Gwin & Jamie Quatro

Please help Square Books welcome authors Minrose Gwin and Jamie Quatro for their new novels. The two authors will be in conversation Monday, September 16th at 5:30 PM at Off Square Books.

Can't make it? Reserve a signed first edition of Beautiful Dreamers here and Two-Step Devil here. Personalization available. Can't make it? Tune in virtually via Facebook Live.

About Minrose's Book

From Minrose Gwin, award-winning author of The Accidentals, comes Beautiful Dreamers, a story of a precocious teen and her mother, their gay best friend, and the con man who unravels their family.

It's 1953 when Memory Feather and her mother, Virginia, are welcomed back home to the Mississippi Gulf Coast community of Belle Cote by Virginia's childhood friend Mac McFadden, whose verve and energy buoy the recently divorced Virginia to embrace this new chapter. Memory ("Mem") is unlike other girls: she is attuned to the voices of plants and animals and is missing two fingers on her twisted left hand. The three of them knit their lives together and become a close, though unconventional, family.

While Mac's wealth, brains, and good humor have allowed him to carve out a niche in Belle Cote, his position as a gay man active in the burgeoning Civil Rights Movement exposes him to censure, harassment, and even brutality. When the unscrupulous and charismatic Tony Amato arrives in Belle Cote as Mac's "guest," he sets in motion a series of events that will shatter familial bonds and forever change Mem's life. Now, an adult Mem recounts the story of the scars Tony left in her teenage years, confronting her culpability in the disastrous events of that final summer.

Sweeping, dramatic, and vividly rendered, Beautiful Dreamers is a novel of innocence and betrayal, love and intolerance, and the care and honesty we owe the families we choose.

About the Author

Minrose Gwin is the author of the novels The Queen of Palmyra, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick and a finalist for the John Gardner Fiction Book Award; Promise, which was shortlisted for the Willie Morris Award in Southern Literature; and The Accidentals, which received the 2020 Mississippi Institute for Arts and Letters Award in Fiction. She has also published a memoir, Wishing for Snow, about the collision of poetry and psychosis in her mother's life, and four books of literary and cultural criticism, most recently Remembering Medgar Evers: Writing the Long Civil Rights Movement. She was co-editor of The Literature of the American South, a Norton anthology, and The Southern Literary Journal. Like the characters in her novels, Minrose Gwin is a native of Mississippi. She began her writing career as a journalist and later taught at universities across the country, most recently the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with her partner, Ruth Salvaggio, and several loquacious four-leggeds.For more information about Minrose's memoir and novels, see minrosegwin.com.


About Jamie's Book

"Jamie Quatro is a writer of sinuous, muscular power and grace. Two-Step Devil is a starkly gorgeous story of God and loss and art and love, and her best book yet." --Lauren Groff

From a New York Times Notable "writer of great originality" comes a bold new novel about love, faith and two societal outsiders whose lives converge in the contemporary American South
The "fearless" (New Yorker) author of I Want to Show You More and Fire Sermon--whose recently published stories in The New Yorker and The Paris Review have brought her new attention--is known for her sharp, seductive prose and masterful exploration of the divine and the carnal in daily life. In Two-Step Devil, Quatro delivers a striking and formally inventive story of the unlikely relationship between two strangers on the margins of society and the shadowy forces that threaten their futures.

In 2014, in Lookout Mountain, Alabama, the Prophet--a seventy-year-old man who paints his visions--lives off the grid in a cabin near the Georgia border. While scrounging for materials at the local scrapyard, the Prophet sees a car pull up to
an abandoned gas station. In the back seat is a teenage girl with zip ties on her wrists, a girl he realizes he must rescue from her current life. Her name is Michael, and the Prophet feels certain that she is a messenger sent by God to
take his end-time warnings to the White House. Michael finds herself in the Prophet's remote, art-filled cabin, and as their uncertain dynamic evolves into tender friendship, she is offered a surprising opportunity to escape her past--and perhaps change her future.

Moving through the worlds of the Prophet, the girl, and a beguiling devil figure who dances in the corner of their lives, Two-Step Devil is a propulsive, philosophical examination of fate and faith that dares to ask what salvation, if any, can be found in our modern world.

About the Author

Jamie Quatro is the New York Times Notable author of I Want to Show You More, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award and the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize, and Fire Sermon, a Book of the Year for the Economist, San Francisco Chronicle, LitHub, Bloomberg, and the Times Literary Supplement. Quatro's fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, the New York Review of Books and Ploughshares. She is the recipient of fellowships from MacDowell, Yaddo, and Maison Dora Maar, and teaches in the Sewanee School of Letters MFA program. Quatro lives with her family in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Praise for Two-Step Devil...

“In this spellbinding story of good and evil, revelation and madness, Jamie Quatro ponders all the ways in which innocence and vulnerability can be exploited in a culture that deliberately turns from human suffering. Beautiful and brave and brilliant, shot through with mystery and love, Two-Step Devil is a novel that only Jamie Quatro could have written — and only, I suspect, with an angel peering over her shoulder.”—Margaret Renkl

“Jamie Quatro’s Two-Step Devil compelled me with almost supernatural force. I could not turn away. It’s a book that wrestles with the biggest questions about sin and salvation, violation and agency–striding fearlessly into narrative and political terrain almost always treated with knee-jerk, agenda-driven simplicity–but the pulse at the core of this breathtaking novel is unequivocally human, tender and alive–formally daring and utterly riveting.”—Leslie Jamison

“Glorious, rich, mad, wonderful, daring and epic in its scope, Two-Step Devil is simply thrilling to read.”—Samantha Harvey

“Jamie Quatro is one of the finest, and most fearless, American writers currently working. Her new novel, Two-Step Devil, is, among other things, an intense exploration of the Christian faith, a deeply empathetic portrait of a weirdo, and a peerlessly innovative modern-day theodicy. I’ve never read anything like it. I suspect no one has.”—Tom Bissell

“The bold, ingenious, impassioned Two-Step Devil takes risks—tonally, formally and theologically—that would terrify a less masterly writer than Jamie Quatro. Her unforgettable characters, her meticulous observation of backwoods folklife and her wide-ranging intellect come together to create a novel that’s a wild and rich entertainment, a profound interrogation of God’s ways to Man, and–perhaps most daring of all—a story of simple human compassion.”—David Gates

“The characters in Jamie Quatro’s Two-Step Devil will surely join the pantheon of Hazel Motes, Temple Drake, and Howard Finster. They are their own peculiar theological texts, defying doctrinal consistency—and thank God for that.”—Charles Marsh

“Reading this novel is like holding on to a live wire. Jamie Quatro is the real thing. The music of these sentences lights my hair on fire.”—Garth Greenwell

Pre-Order Now Badge
Beautiful Dreamers By Minrose Gwin Cover Image
ISBN: 9798885740364
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Hub City Press - August 27th, 2024

From Minrose Gwin, award-winning author of The Accidentals, comes Beautiful Dreamers, a story of a precocious teen and her mother, their gay best friend, and the con man who unravels their family.

Pre-Order Now Badge
Two-Step Devil By Jamie Quatro Cover Image
ISBN: 9780802163134
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: Grove Press - September 10th, 2024

"Jamie Quatro is a writer of sinuous, muscular power and grace. Two-Step Devil is a starkly gorgeous story of God and loss and art and love, and her best book yet." --Lauren Groff

Event date: 
Monday, September 16, 2024 - 5:30pm
Off Square Books
129 Courthouse Square
Oxford, MS 38655
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