Join award-winning, New York Times bestselling author Silas House for the launch of his new novel, Southernmost, an intensely candid and lyrical story that initially sprung from the seeds of his own life. Called “a spiritual journey, a love story, and a classic road novel,” Southernmost explores our ability to escape the confines of intolerance and hate and move toward dignity, understanding, and grace. As a pastor wrestles with a crisis not just of his faith but of all the certainties in his own life—his marriage, his community, his parenthood—a nuanced portrait of the culture of the contemporary South emerges.
When a flood washes away much of a small community along the Cumberland River in Tennessee, Asher Sharp, an evangelical preacher there, starts to see his life anew. He has already lost a brother due to his inability to embrace his brother's coming out of the closet. Now, in the aftermath of the flood, he tries to offer shelter to two gay men, but he's met with resistance by his wife. Furious about her prejudice, Asher delivers a sermon where he passionately defends the right of gay people to exist without condemnation. In the heated battle that ensues, Asher loses his job, his wife, and custody of his son, Justin. As Asher worries over what will become of the boy, whom his wife is determined to control, he decides to kidnap Justin and flees with the boy to Key West—the southernmost point in the country—in search of sanctuary and in hopes of finding his brother. There, he discovers a new way of thinking about love, faith, parenthood, and life.
Silas House is the author of five novels, including the New York Times bestseller A Parchment of Leaves. He is a frequent contributor to the New York Times and a former commentator for NPR’s All Things Considered. House is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers and is the winner of the E.B. White Award, the Nautilus Award, the Appalachian Book of the Year, the Hobson Medal for Literature, and other honors.