An Author Event with Crystal Wilkinson


Union Ave Books is thrilled to host author Crystal Wilkinson as part of her book tour for PRAISESONG FOR THE KITCHEN GHOSTS. This event will take place on February 3rd at 7pm at the East Tennessee History Center. The East Tennessee History Center is located at 601 S Gay St, Knoxville, TN 37902. If you plan to attend, please fill out the webform below with your  name and the number of attendees in your group.


CRYSTAL WILKINSON, Kentucky’s Poet Laureate from 2021 to 2023, is the award-winning author of Perfect Black; The Birds of Opulence; Water Street; and Blackberries, Blackberries. She is the recipient of an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Poetry, an O. Henry Prize, a USA Artists Fellowship, and an Ernest J. Gaines Prize for Literary Excellence. She has received recognition from the Yaddo Foundation, Hedgebrook, The Hermitage Foundation, and others. Her short stories, poems, and essays have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. She currently teaches at the University of Kentucky in the creative writing MFA program.


In Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts, Crystal Wilkinson gifts us a key that unlocks not only her own treasured memories but methods for embracing our own personal histories. Wilkinson shares nearly forty family recipes rooted deep in the past, full of flavor—delicious favorites including Corn Pudding, Chicken and Dumplings, Granny Christine’s Jam Cake, and Praisesong Biscuits, brought to vivid life through stunning photography. Together, Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts brings to life a culinary and artistic inheritance that honors the mothers who came before, the land that provided for generations of her family, and the untold heritage of Black Appalachia. Part memoir, part cookbook, Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts is a poetic weaving of many vibrant threads—recipes, family photos, interviews, fiction, and a lyrical imagination—to present a culinary portrait and tapestry of a family that has lived and worked the earth of the mountains for over a century. Praisesong for the Kitchen Ghosts is a veritable triumph: in time travel across centuries, as a necessary vehicle for illuminating a hidden history and culture, and as an irrefutable anchor for the legacy of Black Appalachia.

Event date: 
Saturday, February 3, 2024 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm
Event address: 
601 S Gay St.
Knoxville, TN 37902