Barbara Kingsolver

Barbara Kingsolver was born on April 8th, 1955 in Annapolis, Maryland. Her father, a doctor, moved the family to the rural town of Carlisle, Kentucky when she was just a girl. For a short time when she was a child, Kingsolver lived with her family in the Democratic Republic of the Congo while her parents did public health work there.

Kingsolver attended DePauw University in Indiana and began her lifelong activism there with protests against the Vietnam War. She graduated in 1977 with a Bachelor's degree in Science and lived in France for a year before eventually settling in Tucson, Arizona. In the mid-1980's, Kingsolver began her writing career as a science writer for the University of Arizona which then led to some work for the Tucson Weekly newspaper. She soon submitted a short story to another local newspaper and won a contest. This began her career in fiction.

In 1985, Kingsolver married Joseph Hoffmann and two years later gave birth to a daughter named Camille. Kingsolver's breakout novel, "The Bean Trees" was published in 1988 and quickly followed a few years later with a sequel called, 'Pigs in Heaven' (1993).

In 1990, dissatisfied with America's involvement in the first Gulf war, Kingsolver moved with her daughter to the Canary Islands. After returning to America two years later, she separated from her husband and married another man named Steve Hopp with whom she had a daughter named Lily.  In 1998, Kingsolver's most well-known novel, "The Poisonwood Bible" was released and saw immediate success. The novel was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and won the National Book Prize of South Africa.

In the year 2000, Kingsolver created a prize to support authors who have as yet unpublished works that reflect social justice issues. The prize is called "The Bellwether Prize" and is awarded in even-numbered years. That same year she was awarded the "National Humanities Medal" by then-president Bill Clinton. Kingsolver has since published 3 more novels, "Prodigal Summer" (2000), "The Lacuna" (2009) and, her most recent novel, "Flight Behavior", (2012).

In 2004, Kingsolver and her family moved to Washington County, Virginia where they currently live.

The Poisonwood Bible

"The Poisonwood Bible" is a novel written by Barbara Kingsolver and published in 1998. The book was an immediate success and was chosen for Oprah's Book Club in 1999. It was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in fiction that same year and in the year 2000 won the South African Boeke Prize. The novel tells the story of the five women of the Price family and each new chapter is told … [Read more...]

The Bean Trees

"The Bean Trees" is a novel by the American author Barbara Kingsolver that was published in 1988. The novel was Kingsolver's first and was generally well-reviewed by critics. As a feminist and an advocate for the rights of immigrants, Kingsolver wrote the book to reflect many of these deeply-held beliefs. The protagonist of the novel, a woman named Taylor Greer, leaves her hometown in … [Read more...]