Rilla Askew

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Rilla Askew

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in The United States
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July 2012


Rilla Askew received a 2009 Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Askew's first novel, THE MERCY SEAT, was nominated for the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Dublin IMPAC Prize, was a Boston Globe Notable Book, and received the Oklahoma Book Award and the Western Heritage Award in 1998. Her acclaimed novel about the Tulsa Race Massacre, FIRE IN BEULAH, received the American Book Award and the Myers Book Award from the Gustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human Rights. She was a 2004 fellow at Civiella Ranieri in Umbertide, Italy, and in 2008 her novel HARPSONG received the Oklahoma Book Award, the Western Heritage Award, the WILLA Award from Women Writing the West, and the Violet Crown Award from the Wri ...more

3.17.20. how we live now...

In my classes in short fiction we talk about creating the moment after which nothing will ever be the same. My students haven’t lived through one like this before. Sometimes the moment is dramatic, a violent eruption we watch in disbelief that slowly settles into acceptance—the crumbling, cascading towers of the World Trade Center, for instance. In the days after 9/11, no writer I knew could write Read more of this blog post »
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Published on March 17, 2020 16:04 Tags: 9-11, coronavirus, covid-19, short-stories
Average rating: 3.79 · 1,769 ratings · 365 reviews · 9 distinct worksSimilar authors
Kind of Kin

3.65 avg rating — 993 ratings — published 2013 — 11 editions
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Fire in Beulah

4.07 avg rating — 333 ratings — published 2001 — 9 editions
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The Mercy Seat

3.59 avg rating — 169 ratings — published 1997 — 9 editions
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Harpsong

3.94 avg rating — 149 ratings — published 2007 — 5 editions
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Strange Business

4.02 avg rating — 62 ratings — published 1992 — 4 editions
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Most American: Notes from a...

4.59 avg rating — 39 ratings — published 2017 — 3 editions
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The Best Small Fictions: 20...

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4.71 avg rating — 17 ratings2 editions
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Voices from the Heartland: ...

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3.83 avg rating — 6 ratings2 editions
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Red Dirt Women: At Home on ...

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4.21 avg rating — 14 ratings — published 2013 — 2 editions
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Rilla is now friends with Melody Charles
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Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson
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There’s a sorrow at the heart of this book, a grave woundedness. These young people carry ancient wounds, and new ones; they come to us as literal and figurative orphans, hurt to the cores of their beings—especially the young narrator, Sequoyah. Laye ...more
Rilla made a comment on her review of Crooked Hallelujah
Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford
" Sarah Evan wrote: "Thank you for your great review to a great book. I enjoyed the book not having even been to these areas but got a strong sense of p ...more "
Rilla and 6 other people liked Rachel's review of Crooked Hallelujah:
Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford
"The power of women. The power of women. This gorgeous book is about the power of women - and surviving with whatever you have. "
Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford
""Can I love anything the way that I used to love the mystery of my mother, her strength in suffering?"

This novel follows four generations of Cherokee women from the 1970s into the near future, mostly focusing on their relationships with each other. O" Read more of this review »
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Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford
Crooked Hallelujah
by Kelli Jo Ford (Goodreads Author)
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There are three attributes that really engage me in a work of fiction: gorgeous language, memorable characters, complex insights into the human condition. When these three sing, and the work happens also to be set in my home territory of Eastern Okla ...more
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In the Country of Women by Susan Straight
In the Country of Women
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I love this memoir so much. I've long been a fan of Susan Straight's fiction, and, as often happens when I read a memoir by a writer I admire, I feel privileged to see inside the writer's life and mind with this work. I especially admire how Straight ...more
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The Mirror & the Light by Hilary Mantel
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The Mirror & the Light by Hilary Mantel
The Mirror & the Light (Thomas Cromwell, #3)
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More of Rilla's books…
“We didn’t get anything done! She looked around vaguely, then wandered along the corridor to the”
Rilla Askew, Kind of Kin

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“When you fall in love, you fall in love with yourself, when you kill yourself, you kill someone else.”
Jessica Treat

“As a people, we have been tolled farther and farther away from the facts of what we have done by the romanticizers, whose bait is nothing more than the wishful insinuation that we have done no harm. Speaking a public language of propaganda, uninfluenced by the real content of our history which we know only in a deep and guarded privacy, we are still in the throes of the paradox of the “gentleman and soldier.”

However conscious it may have been, there is no doubt in my mind that all this moral and verbal obfuscation is intentional. Nor do I doubt that its purpose is to shelter us from the moral anguish implicit in our racism—an anguish that began, deep and mute, in the minds of Christian democratic freedom-loving owners of slaves.”
Wendell Berry, The Hidden Wound




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