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Andrea Hairston Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Mindscape (2006)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Redwood And Wildfire (2011)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Will Do Magic for Small Change (2016)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Master of Poisons (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Impolitic! (2012)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Lonely Stardust (2014)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Andrea Hairston
Andrea Hairston was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1952, and is an essayist, novelist, playwright, and the Artistic Director of Chrysalis Theater. Her plays have been produced at the Kennedy Center, at Yale Rep, Rites and Reason, StageWest, and on Public Radio and Television. She has also translated plays by Kaca Celan and Michael Ende from German into English.

She has received many directing and playwriting awards, including a Rockefeller/NEA Grant for New Works, a National Endowment for the Arts Grant to Playwrights, an NEA Grant to work as dramturge/director with Pearl Cleage, and a Ford Foundation Grant.

During her free time she is the Louise Wolff Kahn 1931 Professor of Theatre and Afro-American Studies at Smith College. She has received the International Association of the Fantastic in the Arts Distinguished Scholarship Award for her outstanding contributions to criticisms of the fantastic.

While growing up in Pittsburgh, she did community organizing working antiwar activism, union, and civil rights.

Andrea enjoys biking at night year round, where she meets bears, multi-legged creatures of breath and light, and the occasional shooting star.

“Redwood and Wildfire” won the Carl Brandon Kindred Award and the Tiptree Award. “Mindscape” won the Carl Brandon Parallax Award.

Andrea’s debut novel, called “Mindscape”, was released in the year 2006. Her work is from the science fiction and fantasy genres.

“Mindscape” is the first stand alone novel and was released in the year 2006. Mindscape takes us to a future where the world itself has been divided literally by the Barrier. For 115 years this epi-dimensional, extraterrestrial entity has split Earth into nothing more than warring zones. Although a treaty to end the interzonal wars has been has been put together, but power-hungry politicians, spiritual fundamentalists, and gangsters are bound and determined to make sure it doesn’t happen.

The architect of the treaty, named Celestina, gets assassinated, and Elleni, her protegee, a talented renegade, who is also one of the very few that is able to negotiate the Barrier, takes her mantle up. Now Elleni and one motley crew of allies risk their very lives to make this treaty work. Could they repair their fractured world before the Barrier devours them entirely?

Hairston’s prose is quite delightful and all of her characters are interesting and strong. The story carries you along on quite a wild ride, and her insights into culture and race felt sure-handed. Hairston dumps you right into this world without much of an explanation as to what’s going on, and after a bit, you begin to understand just what is going on, once the story hits a certain mark.

“Redwood and Wildfire” is the second stand alone novel and was released in the year 2011. At the start of the twentieth century, minstrel shows are transformed into vaudeville, which becomes moving pictures. Hunkering together in the dark theatres, some diverse audiences marvel at the flickering images. “Dreaming in public” becomes common culture and part of what turns “native” born and immigrants into Americans.

Aidan, a Seminole Irish man and Redwood, an African-American woman, travel from Georgia to Chicago, from a haunted swampland to the “city of the future”. Gifted performers and the hoodoo conjurors, struggle to call up the wondrous world that they imagine, not just on the screen and the sage, but in wounded hearts, on the city streets, and in front parlours.

The power of hoodoo is the power of the community that believes in its capacities to heal and plot the course of both today and tomorrow. Aidan and Redwood, who live in a system that’s stacked against them, have a talent and power in joy and torment. Their quest to find a place to be who they’d like to be is one painful, exhilarating, and magical adventure. Filmmakers, healers, blues singers, and haints.

Readers found themselves laughing and crying from beginning to end, and felt wholly nurtured by the novel. Redwood and Aidan are strongly rendered humans, compassionate yet believably flawed. Over the course of the novel, fans of this book found themselves being totally invested in everything that was going on for them.

“Will Do Magic for Small Change” is the third stand alone novel and was released in the year 2016. Cinnamon Jones dreams only of stepping up on stage and acting her heart out just like her famous grandparents, Wildfire and Redwood. However, since she is 180 pounds and 5’10”, she is theatrically challenged. Her family life is a tangled mess of lethal secrets and mystery, and no one tells Cinnamon the full truth.

Before her older brother died, he gave her The Chronicles of the Great Wanderer, a story of a Dahomean warrior lady and the alien from another dimension that performed in Paris as well as the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair.

The Chronicles might be alien science or they could be magic, but the tale is certainly linked to Cinnamon’s family secrets. An act of violence leaves her family wounded, Cinnamon and her theatre squad are determined to solve the all the mysteries and bring her worlds together.

Fans of the book were most compelled by these characters, and found they became strongly invested in Cinnamon’s tale. This novel is a celebration of storytelling’s power, the links to the past, present, and future, and magic. It is a magical novel all on its own with deep layers of meaning that people will ponder over for some time.

“Master of Poisons” is the fourth stand alone novel and was released in the year 2020. The world’s changing. Poison desert eats up good farmland. Formerly-sweet water turns sour. The wind blows sadness and sand across the Empire. Getting caught in a storm means death. To live and not do anything is death. There’s magic in this world, but a good conjure is tough to find.

Djola, spymaster and right hand man of the lord of the Arkhysian Empire, desperately attempts to save his adopted homeland, even while he’s in exile.

A young woman who trains to be a powerful griot, named Awa, tests the very limits of her knowledge and comes into her own in the world of floating cities, sorcery, kindly beasts, and uncertain men.

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