Lisa Patton grew up in Memphis, lives in Nashville and sets her fiction in the South, be it a literal setting or just one in the southern-born protagonist’s mind. Her three book series featuring Memphis girl LeeLee Satterfield established her as a new voice in both southern fiction and women’s fiction. Her newest book is Rush, a satirical but heartfelt look at getting into a sorority at a major southern university.
Patton recently visited her hometown again to promote Rush, and one of her stops was the Collierville Burch Library. Patton braved speed traps along Poplar to arrive at Collierville Burch Library on the afternoon of Thursday, Nov. 29, and her effort was well rewarded as she was greeted by a full house in the Halle Room for her talk and signing.
Rush follows the journey of Cali Watkins as she attempts to enter the sisterhood of Alpha Delta Beta sorority at Ole Miss without the benefit of family money or name. There are other characters with their own stories, as in any good novel, and Patton weaves them together to create a world that is just one step from the real thing. Patton says she wrote the novel as both a love letter and a poke to the world of sororities, and did receive some criticism about her portrayal. But she also received support and the same sentiment was evident in the Halle Room at CBL. The discussion moved from the personalities of the book’s characters to Patton’s writing habits and her journey as an author from writing as a “pantser” (writing by the seat of your pants) to a “plotter” (following an outline). The afternoon ended with a group photo and book signing.
To keep up with book signings and other happenings at the Collierville Burch Library, go to colliervillelibrary.org.