WILSON, N.C. – Edgar Award winning author James W. Hall will be the featured speaker at the Barton College Friends of Hackney Library fall dinner scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 6. The evening’s festivities, to be held in Hardy Alumni Hall, will begin with a book signing and wine reception at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and the program at 7 p.m.

Tickets for the dinner event are $35 per person, with reservations accepted until Oct. 2.  Members of the Barton College Friends of Hackney Library may reserve tickets for $30 per person.  Table reservations must be for a total of eight persons. Please contact Cynthia Collins at 399-6503 or fohl@barton.edu for reservations or additional information.

Hall’s 15 novels to date include, but are not limited to: “Under Cover of Daylight” (1987), “Bones of Coral” (1992), “Blackwater Sound” (2002), “Off the Chart” (2003), “Forests of the Night” (2004), and “Magic City” (2007). His latest release is “Hell’s Bay” (2008).

Born in Kentucky but a long-time Florida resident, Hall is best known for his series of 10 crime novels featuring the hard-bitten, reclusive character Thorn, with settings usually in south Florida locales. According to Hall’s FAQ page, the character of Thorn is a combination of several people, both real and fictional: “A neighbor of mine in Key Largo many years ago heavily influenced his creation…There’s also a little Travis McGee [fictional detective of author John D. MacDonald, who influenced Hall's writing] in him of course. And, he’s a loner like I am, someone who spends a great deal of time in a room crafting small beautiful objects (fishing flies) that only a few people in the world truly appreciate.”

A number of Hall’s works have garnered such recognitions as the John D. MacDonald Award, the San Francisco Review of Books Critic’s Choice Award, and the Shamus Award for best P.I. novel. In addition, several of his books have been chosen as Literary Guild and Book-of-the-Month Club selections and have been translated into a dozen languages. But fiction is not the only genre in which he works; Hall has written four books of poetry, collections of short stories (one of which, “The Catch,” received the 2006 Edgar Allan Poe Award for best short story) and a collection of essays, as well as two screenplay adaptations for his books. Hall also has contributed to a variety of periodicals, including “American Scholar,” “Antioch Review,” “Georgia Review,” “Kenyon Press,” “North American Review,” “Poetry,” and “Southern Poetry Review.”

Hall holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in literature from Eckerd College (formerly Florida Presbyterian College) in St. Petersburg, a Master of Arts degree in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University, and a Ph.D. in literature and creative writing from the University of Utah. He has been teaching literature and creative writing at Florida International University in Miami for over three decades. One of his more celebrated former students is author Dennis Lehane who wrote “Mystic River” and “The Given Day.”

Hall and his wife, Evelyn, divide their time between south Florida and the mountains of North Carolina.

This event is sponsored in part by BB&T.

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Questions?  Contact Kathy Daughety, director of public relations, at 252-399-6529 or email: kdaughety@barton.edu.

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