Bookmarks & Inkblots



Mission Statement:

Virginia Living strives to highlight Virginian authors who were born here as well as those who have decided to call the commonwealth home. We also endeavor to promote some of the best Southern Writing around. Homegrown authors like William Styron, Edward P. Jones, Ann Beattie, Claudia Emerson, and Tom Robbins join literary legends like William Faulkner, Flannery O'Connor, Alice Walker, Zora Neale Hurston, and Mark Twain (among others obviously) and rub elbows with their Southern contemporaries—such as Cormac McCarthy, Barbara Kingsolver, Charles Frazier, Jesmyn Ward, and Tayari Jones (etc. etc. etc.).


We also want to show our support for local bookstores: Chop Suey Books in Richmond, Peach Street Books in Cape Charles, McKays Used Books in Manassas, Old Town Books in Alexandria, The Bookery in Lexington, Too Many Books in Roanoke, 2nd Act Books in Charlottesville, and so many more. Furthermore, we are teaming up with bookstore employees as well as graduate students from Virginia university programs to publish online reviews twice a month.


We are currently reviewing: prose, poetry, and nonfiction.


Book News


Family Law-cover

Family Law

by Gin Pillips

2021 / Viking / 304 pp / $26.00

If Harper Lee had been possessed by Virginia Woolf’s ghost, Family Law might have been her third novel. Dealing with a principled and outspoken lawyer (Atticus Finch much) who is not only female but has a room of her own, this legal thriller explores the role of women in southern society. At a time and in a place (1980s Alabama) where female lawyers are unimaginable, Lucia Gilbert is considered an exotic species—or perhaps to some, an invasive one. When sheltered teen Rachel Morris goes with her mother, Margaret, to find a divorce lawyer, the young girl is starstruck by the contrast not only in outward confidence but in the cognitive aspects between the two women.


Full Review Here:

Bio: Gin Phillips is the author of The Well and The Mine, winner of the 2009 Barnes and Noble Discover Prize in Fiction, and Fierce Kingdom, which was a New York Times Book Review's Best Crime Novels of 2017. She recently wrote her debut childrn's book, The Hidden Summer. She lives in Birmingham, Alabama, with her husband, children, and dog.

Gin Phillips


Winning Writers