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Blackberries, Blackberries by Crystal Wilkinson

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This is the first short story collection and first book published by Crystal Wilkinson whose novel, Birds of Opulence was the winner of the 2016 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence awarded exclusively to African-Americans. “[Crystal Wilkinson’s] honest and sensual narrative pulls the reader in like a lover sharing their most intimate secrets. Sometimes whispering, oftentimes singing, but always clear and evocative.” – Frank X Walker. “Wilkinson is a storyteller in the tradition of Southerners such as Eudora Welty and Carson McCullers. [She] understands what makes our language so beautiful. Through the diversity of her characters and the richness of her language, Wilkinson has taught me a lot” – Lexington Herald Leader. Wilkinson grew up on her grandparent’s farm on Indian Creek in Casey County, Kentucky, which inspires the setting for these stories. She now is Appalachian Writer-in-Residence at Berea College and teaches in the MFA Program at Spaulding University. She and her husband own Wild Fig Books and Coffee in Lexington, Kentucky.


Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, a 2017 reprint of a 2000 release. 161 pages with a new Foreword by Nikki Finney and a new Afterword by Honoree Jeffers. Trade paperback