Local novelist Kent Wascom will present and sign his new book, SECESSIA, at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 7, at Octavia Books (513 Octavia St.). A portion of the proceeds from sales of the book will benefit Room 220.
SECESSIA is a work of historical fiction driven by Wascom’s extraordinary voice. Alternating between the perspectives of five characters, SECESSIA weaves a tapestry of ravenous greed and malformed love, of slavery and desperation, set within the baroque melting-pot that is New Orleans. The narrators’ lives intersect in various ways with General Benjamin “The Beast” Butler of Massachusetts, a man whose greed and ferocious acuity make him uniquely suited to govern New Orleans after the city’s fall to Union troops in 1862. A gothic saga of epic scope and intimate horror, SECESSIA offers a netherworld reflection of the conflict between north and south.
Listen to Wascom discuss the book with Susan Larson on WWNO’s The Reading Life here.
Publishers Weekly writes of SECESSIA:
Though most of the characters are as passionate, selfish, and greedy as the city itself, Wascom makes every one of them a pleasure to read, effortlessly inhabiting each of their specific psychologies.
Kent Wascom was born in New Orleans in 1986, attended Louisiana State University, and received his MFA from Florida State University. He was awarded the 2012 Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Prize for Fiction. The Blood of Heaven was his first novel.