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Bearwallow: A Personal History of a Mountain Homeland by Jeremy B. Jones

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This book won the Gold Award in memoir from the Independent Publishers. Bearwallow is the name of the mountain that rises above the small Henderson County, North Carolina, community of Edneyville.  Jeremy B. Jones was raised there and returned, newly married, to teach at the elementary school he had attended as a child. "'Me in place and the place in me,' Seamus Heaney declares in his poem 'A Herbal.' That idea is at the core of this deeply satisfying memoir of one man's exile from and return to his Appalachian homeland. Jeremy Jones shows the complexity of a region and a people too often reduced to the crudest of stereotypes, and by doing so gains even greater self-awareness. Bearwallow is a book to be savored." ―Ron Rash. "Bearwallow is a thoughtful reflection on what it means to be a particular kind of southerner―one who went away and returned to see his homeplace anew through fresh eyes. Jeremy B. Jones revels in what many have known for years―that there is not now and never has been a singular Appalachian experience. Jones’s writing is clear-eyed, curious, and reverent. This memoir is a pure pleasure to read."―Beth Macy. "Bearwallow is a marvel of a book―intricate and wise. Jones folds the past in with the present―his ancestors’ stories in with his own and those of the new generations of immigrants―tales told in beautiful, meditative prose that stack up like the mountain ridges, one on top of another in a seamless continuum." ―Mesha Maren. "In prose vivid and fresh, Jeremy Jones gives us an intimate and in-depth study of contrasting worlds―Latin America, the Blue Ridge Mountains, old families, new Hispanic arrivals, the pull of home, and the need to escape. . . . It is a story of both teaching and learning, of roots, and of unexpected discovery. Bearwallow is a delight to read." ―Robert Morgan. The author, Jeremy B. Jones, now teaches at Western Carolina University.

Durham, North Carolina: Blair, a 2021 paperback edition of a 2014 hardback release. 251 pages. Trade paperback.