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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Jan. 31: Good Thunder Reading Series

Georgia-based fiction writer Tayari Jones is next in series.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of English News Release, 1-11-2013

Minnesota State University Mankato’s Good Thunder Reading Series resumes its 2012-2013 schedule when it features Georgia-based fiction writer Tayari Jones on Thursday, January 31. Jones will meet with community writers at 10:00 a.m. in Centennial Student Union 238 and be interviewed later at KMSU-FM studios. She will lead a discussion on the craft of writing at 3:00 pm in the Centennial Student Union Ostrander Auditorium. At 7:30 p.m. in CSU Room 253, she will read from her published work. All events are free and open to the public.

Tayari Jones was born and raised in Georgia and much of her writing centers on the urban South. Her first novel, Leaving Atlanta, a coming-of-age story set against the city’s infamous African American child murders of 1979–81, won the Hurston/Wright Award for debut fiction. Her second novel, The Untelling, about a family struggling to overcome the aftermath of a fatal car accident, received the Lillian C. Smith Book Award from the Southern Regional Council and the University of Georgia Libraries. Jones’s third novel, Silver Sparrow, has been included in O Magazine's Favorite Things for 2011, Library Journal's and Atlanta Magazine's Top Ten Best Books of 2011, and the best books of the year at and Her story of a man’s deception, a family’s complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle has drawn wide praise. Anita Shreve in the Washington Post praised what she considers “one of literature’s most intriguing extended families.”

An interview with the writer, part of the “Authors in Transit” series on public-radio station KMSU 89.7 FM, will air on Thursday, January 31, at 1:00 p.m., and Friday, February 1, at 11:00 a.m.

This year’s Good Thunder Reading Series is funded by the Minnesota State Mankato Department of English, the College of Arts and Humanities, the Office of Institutional Diversity, the Nadine B. Andreas Endowment, the Eddice B. Barber Visiting Writer Endowment, the Robert C. Wright Endowment, and individual donors. This activity is made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the State's arts and cultural heritage fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008. Additionally, this activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. MSU Library Services and the Barnes & Noble Bookstore at Minnesota State offer additional assistance.

For more information about the series, contact Richard Robbins at the MSU Mankato Department of English, 507.389.1354, or see the web site at

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