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The Big Texas Author Talk featuring Ramona Reeves

July 17 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm CDT


Wednesday, July 17th, 2024 via Zoom @ 7PM CST

Up Next: Ramona Reeves, moderated Cassandra Lane


About It Falls Gently All Around and Other Stories

Winner of the 2023 Sergio Troncoso Award for Best First Book of Fiction, Texas Institute of Letters

Happiness and connection prove fickle in this debut collection of eleven linked stories introducing Babbie and Donnie. She is a thrice-divorced former call girl, and he is a sobriety-challenged trucker turned yogi. Along with their community of exes, in-laws, and coworkers, Babbie and Donnie share a longing to reforge their lives, a task easier said than done in Mobile, Alabama, which bears its own share of tainted history. Despite overwhelming challenges and the ever-looming specters of status, race, and class, the characters in It Falls Gently All Around and Other Stories strive for versions of the American dream through modern and often unconventional means. Told with humor and honesty, these stories remind us not only about the fallibility of being human and the resistance of some to change but also about finding redemption in unlikely places.

In linked short stories taking place across time, Reeves offers up two characters finding their own form of redemption. . . . Both humorous and deeply emotional, this collection shines for its beautifully written characters.

These surprising, wonderfully funny stories glow with comic energy. The eleven pieces in It Falls Gently All Around serve as chapters in a deeply satisfying portrayal of characters facing the expiration dates on their old beliefs and their newly acquired convictions. Ramona Reeves has fully brought to life a cast of flawed, breaking people with bravery and resilience to spare. The book is a triumph of wise and compassionate storytelling.
–Kevin McIlvoy, author of One Kind Favor

It Falls Gently All Around when a character believes ‘He could make out ghosts swimming in the darkness, like another life he might have lived. . . .’ It is one of several instances in the book when a story suddenly coalesces, and the reader is both surprised and moved, and this particular example speaks to a clear ambition of the author—to capture the elusive human moments that we all experience but for which we need an artist to genuinely see. This is a splendid book by an important new writer.
–Robert Boswell, author of Mystery Ride, The Heyday of the Insensitive Bastards, and Tumbledown

Ramona Reeves won the Drue Heinz Literature Prize and the Sergio Troncoso Award for Best First Book of Fiction from the Texas Institute of Letters in 2022 for her collection,It Falls Gently All Around and Other Stories. She was a recent fellow at the San Ysidro Writers Residency and a 2024 judge for the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction. Her work has appeared in Post RoadThe Southampton ReviewPembrokeNew SouthBayou MagazineTexas Highways and others. She teaches a course for writers working on their first manuscripts and will be teaching at the Desert Nights, Rising Stars Writers Conference later this year. She and her wife currently call Austin home.

Cassandra Lane is winner of the Louise Meriwether First Book Prize and author of We Are Bridges (Feminist Press), which NPR called “a stunning contribution to what must become our collective memory.” Lane received her MFA from Antioch University LA. She formerly worked as a newspaper reporter, high school English and journalism teacher, college admissions advisor, senior writer, and community relations manager for the Dodgers. Her stories have appeared in the New York Times’s “Conception” series, the L.A. Times, the Times-Picayune, the Atlanta Journal Constitution and multiple anthologies. She is the Editor-in-Chief of L.A. Parent magazine.


July 17
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm CDT
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