Chapter 16


Chapter16 logo over colorful array of book covers and authors

Chapter 16, launched in October 2009, is an online journal about books, writers, and literary events in Tennessee and serves as the state affiliate of the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress.

We cover novels set here; histories involving Tennessee events or locations; authors who live here, were born or educated here; and out-of-state writers when they give readings or participate in book signings anywhere in the state. We also publish original poems and essays by prominent Tennessee authors (including previews of their works in progress).

New content appears daily, and our reviews and interviews are published in newspapers around the state under a syndication plan modeled on Pro Publica’s.

As we celebrate Humanities Tennessee’s 50th anniversary, we’ve decided to mark the occasion on by highlighting 50 notable Tennessee books published over the past five decades.

We hasten to say that we don’t claim these are the “best” Tennessee books or the most popular or important. Ours is simply a list of noteworthy books that spoke to their moment and reflected some aspect of the literary life of Tennessee. The series continues through June 2024.


The Tennessee Solution to Disappearing Book Reviews

In November 2020, author Casey Cep wrote a feature for The New Yorker about Chapter 16, showcasing that it is one of only a few nonprofit media outlets in the country dedicated to coverage of the arts. This feature helped garner additional readers and increased financial support for one of Humanities Tennessee’s most vital literary programs.