- Grand Strand Weekend
- South Carolina for Kids
- South Carolina Bar-B-Que
- A Midlands Weekend
- Civil War Adventures
- South Carolina Waterways
- Three Days in Horse Country
- South Carolina for Seafoodies
- South Carolina Kitsch
- Gullah and African American History
- Upstate Weekend
- South Carolina’s Top Ten for Golfers
- South Carolina’s Offbeat Festivals
- Southern Comforts
- Lowcountry Romance
Edgar, Walter. South Carolina: A History. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1998. An engaging tome written by the state’s most beloved historian and public radio personality.
Ferling, John E. Almost a Miracle: The American Victory in the War of Independence. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2007. Not only perhaps the best single volume detailing the military aspects of the Revolutionary War, but absolutely indispensable for learning about South Carolina’s key role in it. In a dramatic departure from most New England-focused books of this genre, fully half of Almost a Miracle is devoted to an in-depth look at the Southern theater of the conflict.
Grosvenor, Vertamae. Vibration Cooking: The Travel Notes of a Geechee Girl. New York, NY: Ballantine, 1992. This Hampton County, South Carolina, native and popular National Public Radio commentator delivers an offbeat travelogue/cookbook.
Hudson, Charles M. The Southeastern Indians. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press, 1976. Though written decades ago, this seminal work by the noted University of Georgia anthropologist remains the definitive work on the life, culture, art, and religion of the Native Americans of the Southeast region.
Klein, Maury. Days of Defiance: Sumter, Secession, and the Coming of the Civil War. New York, NY: Vintage, 1999. A gripping and vivid account of the lead-up to war, with Charleston as the focal point.
Robinson, Sally Ann. Gullah Home Cooking the Daufuskie Island Way. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2007. Subtitled “Smokin’ Joe Butter Beans, Ol’ ’Fuskie Fried Crab Rice, Sticky-Bush Blackberry Dumpling, and Other Sea Island Favorites,” this cookbook by a native Daufuskie Islander features a foreword by Pat Conroy.
Rogers Jr., George C. Charleston in the Age of the Pinckneys, Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1980. This 1969 history is a classic of the genre.
Rosen, Robert. A Short History of Charleston. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1997. Quite simply the most concise, readable, and entertaining history of the Holy City I’ve found.
Stokes, Thomas L. The Savannah. Marietta, GA: Cherokee Publishing, 2007. This reissued classic is for those interested in a broader historical view of the key regional waterway that forms the western border of South Carolina. Its chapters on Henry Woodward, Hernando De Soto, and Benjamin “Pitchfork” Tillman are particularly well done. Features original sketches by Lamar Dodd, founder of the University of Georgia art school.
Todd, Leonard. Carolina Clay: The Life and Legend of the Slave Potter Dave. New York, NY: W.W. Norton, 2008. A fascinating exploration of the world of the largely anonymous African American artisans who created the now-hot genre known as Edgefield Pottery. We know the story of one of them, the man simply known as Dave, because he was literate enough to sign his name to his amazing works—an extremely unusual (and dangerous) act for the time.
Vernon, Amelia Wallace. African Americans at Mars Bluff. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press, 1995. An engaging look at the author’s ancestral African American community of Mars Bluff outside Florence, where individual families grow rice on small plots using the old methods.
Woodward, C. Vann (ed.). Mary Chesnut’s Civil War. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1981. The Pulitzer Prize–winning classic compilation of the sardonically funny and quietly heartbreaking letters of Charleston’s Mary Chesnut during the Civil War.
Caldwell, Erskine. God’s Little Acre. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1995. Scandalous in its time for its graphic sexuality, Caldwell’s best-selling novel chronicles socioeconomic decay in the mill towns of South Carolina and Georgia during the Great Depression.
Conroy, Pat. The Lords of Discipline. New York, NY: Bantam, 1985. For all practical purposes set at the Citadel, this novel takes you behind the scenes of the notoriously insular Charleston military college.
Conroy, Pat. The Water is Wide. New York, NY: Bantam, 1987. Immortal account of Conroy’s time teaching African American children in a two-room schoolhouse on “Yamacraw” (actually Daufuskie) Island.
Frank, Dorothea Benton. Sullivan’s Island. New York, NY: Berkley, 2004. This South Carolina native’s debut novel, and still probably her best, chronicles the journey of a Charleston woman through the breakup of her marriage to eventual redemption.
Jakes, John. Charleston. New York, NY: Signet, 2003. Historical fiction dealing with exploits in and around the Holy City in the years up to the American Revolution.
Kidd, Sue Monk. The Secret Life of Bees. New York, NY: Penguin, 2003. Set in South Carolina in the 1960s, this best-seller delves into the role of race in the regional psyche. It gained critical acclaim due to the unusual fact that the author, a white woman, features many African American female characters.
Kinsella, W. P. Shoeless Joe. New York, NY: Houghton Mifflin, 1982. Magical realist novel about a man who hears a voice telling him to “build it and they will come,” and constructs a baseball diamond in an Iowa cornfield. Later adapted into the hit film Field of Dreams starring Kevin Costner and—with a totally out-of-place New York accent—Ray Liotta as Greenville native “Shoeless” Joe Jackson.
Poe, Edgar Allan. The Gold Bug. London: Hesperus Press, 2007. Inspired by his stint there with the U.S. Army, the great American author set this classic short story on Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina, near Charleston.
© Jim Morekis from Moon South Carolina, 4th Edition