by Michael Morris
I’ve long said that Kathy L. Patrick, founder of the largest book club in the country --The Pulpwood Queens -- is the Dolly Parton of the book world. Like Dolly, Kathy loves all things flamboyant, has a sweet spirit and a passion to get people reading. During the weekend of January 13 -16, Kathy transformed Jefferson, Texas, into a book lover’s paradise and along the way raised $6,000 for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.
Kathy, who is also the host of the new internet program Beauty and the Book Show, brought together 400 club members from across the country. Her annual Girlfriend Weekend, celebrating its eleventh year, headlined authors such as Pat Conroy, Fannie Flagg, Jeannette Walls and Mark Childress just to name a few.
The three day, sold-out event included panels featuring authors who have been knighted by the head queen as book club selections. Singer/songwriter Marshall Chapman wowed the audience with a performance on opening night while a screening and discussion of Mary Murphy’s powerful documentary, Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and To Kill A Mockingbird, rounded out the celebration.