Ward, Rushdie draw large crowds at Mississippi book fest

Published 08-18-2018

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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - National Book Award winner Jesmyn Ward says she's working on two books.

One is a New Orleans-based story about the slave trade. The other is a young adult novel about an African-American girl with supernatural powers.

Ward and another acclaimed author, Salman Rushdie, attracted large audiences at Saturday's Mississippi Book Festival .

Ward lives on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She won the National Book Award in 2011 for "Salvage the Bones," and in 2017 for another novel, "Sing, Unburied, Sing."

Rushdie, born in India and educated in England, won the 1981 Man Booker Prize for his novel "Midnight's Children."

Rushdie recalled once having lunch with writer Eudora Welty, who invited him to visit her in Mississippi. She died in 2001, but Rushdie started Saturday by saying, lightheartedly: "Here I am, Eudora."

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