Entrekin’s first novel receives early praise | TheUnion.com

Entrekin’s first novel receives early praise

Set against the backdrop of the civil rights movement, “Red Mountain: Birmingham, Alabama, 1965” is the coming-of-age story of Eddie and Chrissy, young white Southerners trying to be true to their beliefs.

Entrekin evokes the struggles of the early 1960s -from the civil rights movement, to the antiwar campaigns, to the sexual openness of that time.

It is a story of young love, idealism, ignorance and tragedy set against changing times in the American South. It is a story of a young couple who struggle to nurture love and sanity amid the backwardness of early 1960s Birmingham and later through the intoxication of bohemian New York City and the sexual revolution.

Filled with racial and sexual tension, “Red Mountain” deals with what it means to try to stand alone against the beliefs of a culture, to find some semblance of clarity and wisdom where there is none, and to be honest in the face of lies.

The novel has received numerous early kudos. Writer Linda Watanabe McFerrin calls it “an absolute page-turner.” Poet Alicia Ostriker says, “Reading this novel, you will feel it as if it were your own life, your own wounds, being lifted up from the well of memory.”

Local writer Sands Hall praises the novel as a “gripping and enlightening read from someone who lived and breathed and wrote his way through one of America’s most tumultuous times.”

Local novelist Louis B. Jones says, “Red Mountain shows how we’re all capable of transcendence and self-transcendence, even in the worst circumstances and among our most hectic mistakes.”

Born and raised in the Bible Belt in Birmingham, Entrekin has resided in Northern California for more than 30 years.

After living with his wife, poet Gail Entrekin, and their children for several years in Nevada City, Charles and Gail have recently moved to Berkeley.

The Entrekins were among a group of writers and lovers of the written word who founded Literature Alive!, a nonprofit group (now an independent program of The Center for the Arts) that has sponsored readings, workshops and other literature-related events since 1995.

Author of several collections of poetry and for two decades managing editor of the Berkeley Poets Workshop & Press, Entrekin is managing editor of Hip Pocket Press. This is his first novel.


WHAT: Literature Alive! presents Charles Entrekin reading from, discussing and signing his new novel, “Red Mountain: Birmingham, Alabama, 1965”

WHEN: 4 p.m. Sunday

WHERE: Off Center Stage at The Center for the Arts, Grass Valley, 315 Richardson St.

ADMISSION: Free, donations to Literature Alive! appreciated

INFORMATION: Call 271-7000 or visit http://www.thecenterforthearts.org or http://www.charlesentrekin.com.

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