Coming Home to Mississippi

Edited by Charline R. McCord
and Judy H. Tucker

160 pages (approx.), 6 x 9 inches, 32 b&w photographs, introduction

978-1-61703-766-5 Cloth $25.00T

Cloth, $25.00

Celebrations of homecoming by prominent Mississippians who made the return journey

With essays by Kevin Bullard, Wyatt Cooper, Bob Allan Dunaway, William Dunlap, Morgan Freeman, Carolyn Haines, Barry Hannah, Mary Donnelly Haskell, Sam Haskell, Alice Jackson, William Jeanes, Russell Knight, Johnnie Mae Maberry, Charline R. McCord, Jo McDivitt, Mary Ann Mobley, Willie Morris, Ronnie Riggs, Maureen Ryan, David Sheffield, Michael Farris Smith, Marco St. John, Scott Stricklin, Keith Thibodeaux, J. Dale Thorn, Judy H. Tucker, Cynthia Walker, Tricia Walker, Jerry W. Ward, Jr., Jesmyn Ward, Sela Ward, Norma Watkins, Dolphus Weary, and Curtis Wilkie

In this collection, essayists examine their lives, their memories of Mississippi, the reasons they left the state, and what drew them back. They talk about how life differs and wears on you in the far-flung parts of our nation, and the qualities that make Mississippi unique.

The writers from all corners of the state are as diverse as the regions from which they come. They are of different races, different life experiences, different talents, and different temperaments. Yet in acceding to the magical lure of Mississippi they are in many ways alike. Their roots are deep in the rich soil of this state, and they come from strong families that valued education and promoted an indomitable optimism. Successes stem from a passion, usually emerging early in life, that burns within them. But that passion is tempered, disciplined, encouraged, and influenced by the people around them, as well as the landscape and the history of their times.

These essays give us a glimpse of the people and places that nurtured the young lives of the essayists and offered the values that directed them as they sought their dreams elsewhere. Often they found that opportunity was within their grasp in their home state and came back to realize their full potential. They came back, in some cases, to retire to a familiar place of pleasant memories, to family and to friends. They all have a love and respect for Mississippi and continue, back home, to use their talents to help make the state an even better place to live.

Charline R. McCord, Clinton, Mississippi, and Judy H. Tucker, Jackson, Mississippi, have published numerous books together, including Christmas Stories from Mississippi, Growing Up in Mississippi, and Christmas Memories from Mississippi, all available from the University Press of Mississippi.

160 pages (approx.), 6 x 9 inches, 32 b&w photographs, introduction