Arts Interview: Homeward bound

When writing her acclaimed novel Calling Me Home, Julie Kibler drew heavily on the horrors of the Deep South's past for inspiration, writes Nadine O'Regan.

31st August, 2013
Julie Kibler: 'I don't think I slept the week my book went to auction. And there were auctions going on in four or five countries.' Photo: Maura Hickey

It's difficult to talk to debut novelist Julie Kibler without constantly mentioning the name of a book she didn't write: The Help by Kathryn Stockett. That 2009 novel movingly portrayed the lot of African-American women who worked as maids in Jackson, Mississippi in the 1960s. A publishing sensation, the book and subsequent Oscar-winning film hit the sweet spot between commercial and literary fiction, and publishers around the globe took notice.

The success of The Help is...

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