Join us with authors Shannon Denise Evans, Steve Bergsman, and Wendy Beasley.
Shannon Denise Evans, author of “Velvet Moon Chronicles: The Leveling” – Secretive and satiated by a life that others would consider taboo, Zoë Hall has architected her existence. After petrifying nightmares begin infiltrating her tightly controlled waking life, she inadvertently awakens a preternatural presence that casts darkness into her psyche and draws her deeper into the embattled realms of her dreams. Part psychological thriller, part surrealistic fantasy, The Leveling explores consciousness and reality, grief and loss, and fearlessly delves into the existential. Pulled between present-day Manhattan and the forested realms of her dreams, Zoë finds herself wedged between the very pillars of light and dark as she comes face-to-face with the most formidable force she’s ever encountered: her own mind.
Steve Bergsman, co-author of “Chapel of Love: The Story of New Orleans Girl Group The Dixie Cups” – In 1963, sisters Barbara Ann and Rosa Hawkins and their cousin Joan Marie Johnson traveled from the segregated South to New York City under the auspices of their manager, former pop singer Joe Jones. With their wonderful harmonies, they were an immediate success. To this day, the Dixie Cups’ greatest hit, “Chapel of Love,” is considered one of the best songs of the past sixty years. The Dixie Cups seemed to have the world on a string. Their songs were lively and popular, singing on such topics as love, romance, and Mardi Gras, including the classic “Iko Iko.” Behind the stage curtain, however, their real-life story was one of cruel exploitation by their manager, who continued to harass the women long after they finally broke away from his thievery and assault. Of the three young women, no one suffered more than the youngest, Rosa Hawkins, who was barely out of high school when the New Orleans teens were discovered and relocated to New York City. At the peak of their success, Rosa was a naïve songstress entrapped in a world of abuse and manipulation. Chapel of Love: The Story of New Orleans Girl Group the Dixie Cups explores the ups and downs of one of the most successful girl groups of the early 1960s. Telling their story for the first time, in their own words, Chapel of Love reintroduces the Louisiana Music Hall of Famers to a new audience.
Wendy Beasley, author of “Beasts and Butterflies” – Raped and pregnant at thirteen, Rachel is forced by her uncaring adoptive parents to leave the picturesque village where she had grown up. Years later, she is given the opportunity to go back with her son. But can she face her old friends, her inner demons… and the rapist? And if so, will it destroy her completely…or can she finally find the love and the closure she craves?