Cover To Cover is the anchor program for GPB’s literary coverage. Cover To Cover features a collection of distinctive Southern voices interviewing Georgia writers, Southern writers, and writers dealing with the South. The GPB Southern Lit Cadre will provide you with a varied, weekly glimpse at fiction, non-fiction, history, poetry, and even the occasional ‘old school’ nod to Flannery O’Connor or William Faulkner.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Collin Kelley: Conquering Venus

Novelist Man Martin interviews Collin Kelley, the author of the novel, Conquering Venus (2009, Vanilla Heart Publishing). Conquering Venus is the story of young American writer, Martin Paige, who chaperones a group of high school seniors on their trip to Paris as a favor to his best friend, teacher Diane Jacobs. Martin finds himself falling in love with David, one of the students, and meets a mysterious Parisian woman, Irene Laureaux, who spends her days spying on the hotel guests across from her apartment.

Martin and Irene discover they have a logic-defying connection: a small tribal tattoo on their left hands that means equal but opposite. This is same tattoo that Martin's lover and Irene's husband had inked into their skin. All the characters' lives are irrevocably changed in a horrifying terrorist attack on a Paris metro station. Liberated by the blast, forced from her own self-imprisonment, Irene learns her husband's death was not an accident, and dares Martin to acknowledge the role he played in Peter's suicide.

Diane, harboring her own secrets and a hidden agenda, takes a drastic step to force David out of the closet and admit his feelings for Martin. From America to England to France, the globe-hopping story places fictional characters amidst historical events such as the Nazi occupation of Paris, the student/worker riots of 1968 and the terrorist bombings of Paris in 1995. Grounded in reality, Conquering Venus is a mystery, a love story and a journey of self-realization.

Collin is also author of three poetry collections, After the Poison, Slow To Burn and Better To Travel. Kelley, a Georgia Author of the Year Award-winner and Pushcart Prize nominee, is also co-editor of the Java Monkey Speaks Poetry Anthology series from Poetry Atlanta Press.

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