Library to host folklore author Sharyn McCrumb

New York Times’ best-selling author Sharyn McCrumb will make a special presentation at the Richard H. Thornton Library in Oxford on Thursday, Nov. 15 at 5:30 p.m.


Best known for her Appalachian “ballad novels” set in the North Carolina/Tennessee mountains, McCrumb’s body of work includes ‘She Walks These Hills,’ ‘The Rosewood Casket,’ ‘The Songcatcher’ and ‘Ghost Riders,’ as well as ‘The Ballad of Tom Dooley’ and ‘King’s Mountain,’ which take place in North Carolina. Her most current novels include ‘Prayers the Devil Answers,’ the story of the last public hanging ever carried out in the United States, and ‘The Unquiet Grave,’ the story of West Virginia’s Greenbrier Ghost.


“I find that the more I write, the more fascinated I become with the idea of the land as an intricate element in the lives of mountain people, and of the past as prologue for any contemporary narrative,” McCrumb has said of her work. “This connection to the land is personal as well as thematic.”


Awards and honors McCrumb has garnered include the Patricia Winn Award for Southern Fiction from the Clarksville/Montgomery County Arts and Heritage Council of Clarksville, TN; the Mary Frances Hobson Prize for Southern Literature by North Carolina’s Chowan University; the Achievement in Literature Award from the Edward Buncombe Chapter of the N.C. Daughters of the American Revolution; and the Perry F. Kendig Award for Literary Arts from Blue Ridge Arts Council of southwest Virginia, as well as other prestigious recognitions. In 2006, McCrumb was named winner of the Book of the Year Award from the Appalachian Writers Association.


McCrumb’s work has been studied in universities around the world and her novels have been translated into eleven languages. She has lectured at Oxford University, the University of Bonn-Germany and at the Smithsonian Institution, as well as teaching a writers’ workshop in Paris.


The author will be discussing these award-winning Appalachian “ballad novels,” as well as her other books, during this presentation. The Richard H. Thornton Library is located at 210 Main Street in Oxford. For more information, contact the library at 919-693-1121 or visit



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