Elk River Books will host a signing by part-time Livingston resident and novelist Ralph Langer on Friday, August 23, during the Art Walk. Langer, former editor of the Dallas Morning News, set his first book, Personal Verdict, in the context of the modern civil rights movement:
“College freshman Jeff Martindale’s life begins changing almost the instant he meets Rev. Isiah Booker, a former Temple University halfback now active in the nascent Civil Rights Movement. Jeff is from a nearly all-white, small northern Michigan town. Isiah’s a Philadelphian, 12 years older and black. Their chance meeting at a casual party on the University of Michigan campus grows from a mutual interest in fly-fishing to full-fledged friendship blended with a mentoring relationship that gradually awakens Jeff to the staggering cruelties of the segregated South, nearly 100 years after the Civil War.
“Jeff and girlfriend, Susan Adams, volunteer for paper-shuffling duties at the Ann Arbor NAACP, but grow increasingly frustrated with minimal national civil rights progress, even after they’re jailed for joining two Tennessee sit-ins. When unspeakable violence strikes, Jeff shockingly risks his life, his future and Susan’s love to pursue what only he views as a morally greater cause.”
The Dallas Morning News won six Pulitzer Prizes under Langer’s tenure. He is the retired chair of the Division of Journalism at Southern Methodist University, president of the national Associated Press Managing Editors Association, and founding president of the National Freedom of Information Coalition.
Langer will sign copies of Personal Verdict during the Art Walk on Friday, August 23, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at Elk River Books, 115 E. Callender St.