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“During this period of social and political unrest, finding myself living in a divided nation, across an emotional border from many loved ones, I am certain I am not alone in seeking healing through writing.”
— excerpted from the editor’s section introduction, 
​”A Time to Heal”

​A Time to Heal
section introduction by Margaret D. Bauer, Editor

On Beauty, The Reluctant Beauty Queen
an essay by Glenis Redmond 

Promised Land
a poem by Maura High 
art by Damian Stamer 

At Home in North Carolina: An Interview with Belle Boggs
by Barbara Bennett 

The Courage to Face Your Truth
a review by Loren Ashten 
Rachael Brooks, Beads

leftover women
a poem by Lisa M. Pursley 
art by Catharine Carter 

Next to Godliness (hear excerpt)
a short story by Rose Himber Howse 
art by Patricia Steele Raible 

Love and Death in North Carolina Poetry
a review by Catherine Carter 
Jessica Jacobs, Take Me with You, Wherever You’re Going 
Wayne Johns, Antipsalm
Eric Tran, The Gutter Spread Guide to Prayer 

Always Timely, No Matter the Time
a review by Ashley Daughtridge 
Kati Gardner, Brave Enough 
David Brendan Hopes, The Falls of Wyona 

a poem by J.S. Absher 
art by Vandorn Hinnant 

At the End of the Causeway
an essay by Hannah Towey 
art by Mary Edna Fraser 

a poem by Christopher Shipman 
art by Kenn Kotara 

Directing Our Attention to the Finite Things of This World
a review by Amber Flora Thomas 
Catherine Carter, Larvae of the Nearest Stars

​The Battle of Relationships through Different Eyes
a review by Jim Clark 
Daynne Romine Powell, In the Sunroom with Raymond Carver
Sandra Ann Winters, Do Not Touch 

an essay by Susan Wilson 

Hypnopompic hallucination of you and your ex in a horse pasture five miles outside of Greensboro
a poem by Shari Crane Fox 
art by Malu Tan 

Love and Marriage
a review by Brandy Reeves 
Judy Goldman, Together 

a poem by Richard Betz 
art by Christopher Lambert 

a poem by Janis Harrington 
art by Rebecca Aloisio 

Time to Start Over
a review by Max Kilgore 
Dale Neal, Appalachian Book of the Dead 

a poem by Janet Ford 
art by Juan Logan 

Tallying the Cost of Addiction in Appalachia
a review by Dale Neal 
David Joy, When These Mountains Burn
Meagan Lucas, Songbirds & Stray Dogs 

Wherever You Go (hear excerpt)
a short story by Nancy H. Williard 
art by Robert Boyd 

The Battle Inside
a review by Meagan Lucas 
Katey Schultz, Still Come Home 

The Great Dimming of the Year 2020
an essay by Carol Scott-Conner 
art by Tim Christensen

Flashbacks: Echoes of Past Issues


I will take this space to ask for your help putting copies of the print issue into libraries across the state. ​

Our primary mission is to promote and preserve North Carolina’s rich literary culture. Let’s get NCLR into libraries and the hands of readers across the country and beyond. “

-excerpted from section introduction, “Sharing North Carolina’s Rich History​​”

Sharing North Carolina’s Rich Literary History
section introduction by Margaret D. Bauer, Editor

Ammons Among North Carolina Friends
a review by Eric C. Walker 
Emily Herring Wilson, “When I Go Back to My Home Country”:
 Remembrance of Archie Ammons 

2021 Ehle Prize Awarded to Essay on Ehle
Finding Ehle’s Mountain Novels 
by Savannah Paige Murray

Something (More) Rich and Strange
a review by Jimmy Dean Smith 
Ron Rash, In the Valley 
Frédérique Spill, The Radiance of Small Things in Ron Rash’s Writings

A Little Bit of Suffering in Common
a review by Jim Coby 
John Hart, The Unwilling 
Charles Dodd White, How Fire Runs 

Short Story Sequencing
a review by Sharon E. Colley 
Leah Hampton, F*ckface and Other Stories 
Rhonda Browning White, The Lightness of Water & Other Stories 

2019-2020 Manly Wade Wellman Award Winner 
A Map to Everlasting and Liberating Truth
a review by Philip Gerard 
Wayne Moore, Triumphant Warrior 

Angelic Voices Sing in North Carolina
a review by Reginald Watson 
Randall Kenan, If I Had Two Wings 
Lenard D. Moore, Editor, All the Songs We Sing 

Remembering Randall
by Margaret D. Bauer 

Michael Parker Awarded 2020 Thomas Wolfe Prize 
Jill McCorkle and Lee Smith Mine the Past, and Both Find Gold
a review by Barbara Bennett 
Jill McCorkle, Hieroglyphics
Lee Smith, Blue Marlin 

The Heart of the Story
a review by Tanya Long Bennett 
Monique Truong, The Sweetest Fruits 

In Search of “Wonders Hidden and Huge”
a review by James W. Kirkland 
Peg Bresnahan, Hunger to Share 

Homage to Hawthorne: A (New) Wonder Book 
a review by Lorraine Hale Robinson 
Marly Youmans, Charis in the World of Wonders 

Love, Power, and Beauty in an Aspirational Rome
a review by Mayee Zhu 
David Brendan Hopes, Night, Sleep, and the Dreams of Lovers 

Discovering Who We Are
a review by Angela Love Moser 
Sarah Dessen, The Rest of the Story 

Make Your Own Kind of Happily Ever After
a review by Savanah Paige Murray 
Sophie Gonzalez, Only Mostly Devastated 
Mary Cecilia Jackson, Sparrow

Debut Novel by Meg Cannistra Wins NC AAUW Award 
Secure Invitations
a review by Robert M. West 
Keith Flynn, The Skin of Meaning
Al Maginnes, Sleeping Through the Graveyard Shift 

2020 Caldwell Award Winner James W. Clark, Jr., North Carolina’s “Johnny Appleseed of the Humanities”

North Carolina Miscellany 


“As always, we thank our reviewers, who provide the great service to NCLR. Over fifty books reviewed this issue!”

—excerpted from the editor’s section introduction, “Welcoming New Writers and Making New Plans”

Welcoming New Writers and Making New Plans
section introduction by Margaret D. Bauer, Editor 

Yearning Over Yonder
a review by Susannah Hedley 
Delia Owens, Where the Crawdads Sing 
art by Marjorie Pierson 

Themes That Persist: Coming of Age Tales of Race, Family, and Identity
a review by Amanda Shingleton Robles 
Sion Dayson, As A River 
Molly Dektar, The Ash Family 

Resilience and Connection
a review by Kristina L. Knotts 
Rebecca Hodge, Wildland

If This Be Life
a review by Rebecca Duncan 
Judy Dearlove, Play On! 

Building a Better Birdhouse: Clifford Garstang’s Troubled Men
a review by Dale Bailey 
Clifford Garstang, House of the Ancients and Other Stories and The Shaman of Turtle Valley

2020 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award Honors Eastern Cherokee Stories

Caught in the Teeth of Love
a review by Jim Coby 
Nathan Ballingrud, Wounds: Six Stories from the Borders of Hell 

When We Talk About Love, There’s Pain
a review by Helen Stead 
Shuly Xóchitl Cawood, A Small Thing to Want 
Ray Morrison, I Hear the Human Noise

Triad Stage of Greensboro Receives Hardee Rives Award 
Yesterday and Today
a review by Emily Herring Wilson 
June Sylvester Saraceno, Feral, North Carolina, 1965 and The Girl From Yesterday

To Speak in Your Own Voice
a review by Janice N. Harrington
Dorianne Laux, As the Day Is Long
Annie Woodford, Bootleg

Lessons in Persistence
a review by Anna McFadyen 
Kay Bosgraaf, The Fence Lesson 
Patricia Hooper, Wild Persistence 

Voice and The Reliable Narrator
a review by Patrick Bizzaro 
Malaika King Albrecht, The Stumble Field 
Michael Gaspeny, The Tyranny of Questions


J.S. Absher
Janet Ford
Shari Crane Fox
Janis Harrington
Maura High
Christopher Shipman

Creative Nonfiction
Glenis Redmond 
Carol Scott-Conner​

Rose Himber Howse
Nancy H. Williard

Cynthia Bickley-Green
Mary Edna Fraser
Damian Stamer 

Rose Himber Howse
Nancy H. Williard 

Orison Anthology
Carol Scott-Conner

​John Burroughs Nature Essay Award
Carol Scott-Conner
Hannah Towey


Editorial Assistants
Drake Heath
Bethany Holmes
Max Kilgore 
Nija Knight
Mary Myers

Elizabeth Currin
Lily Johnson
Vedika Modi