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Banjos, Barbecue and Boiled Peanuts

Kirk H. Neely

Hub City Press
$14.95 paperback
5 ½ x 8 ½  
150 pages
30 black-and-white illustrations
October 2011

Welcome to the South as only Kirk H. Neely can describe it. In Banjos, Barbecue and Boiled Peanuts, Neely uses his precise eye, keen ear, and down-home voice to capture small truths of life in the South as he spins yarns about groundhogs and black snakes, mockingbirds and bluebirds, pound cake and cypress knees.

A fitting sequel to A Good Mule Is Hard to Find, a 2010 Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance finalist for the best book of nonfiction, this collection delves even deeper into the humor and lore of Southern life—the mysteries and truths that are wedged between its mountains, snake down its rivers, stalk its gardens and graveyards, lie hidden in its abandoned boxcars, collect beneath its fingernails.

Banjos, Barbecue and Boiled Peanuts pulls back the curtain of kudzu to reveal a place of weirdness and wonder—a place where a five-string banjo may lead to insanity, the art of preparing slow-cooked barbecue is compared to making love, and the texture and taste of boiled peanuts startle visitors from above the Mason-Dixon line.

These are stories of warmth and wit, of heart and humor. Thoroughly engaging and undeniably touching, Banjos, Barbecue and Boiled Peanuts is a delight for folks of all ages. So similar and yet so fresh are these tales that, once readers leave, they will surely want to come back.


"Banjos, Barbecue and Boiled Peanuts is a delightful collection of Southern tales written by a masterful storyteller. Kirk Neely’s latest book of folk wit and wisdom is to be savored slowly—preferably in a rocker, on a screened  porch, with a cool beverage near at hand." —Walter Edgar, author of South Carolina: A History