Two upcoming books examine perseverance and hope at Mother Emanuel

Speaking volumes


  • Jonathan Boncek
The tragedy at Mother Emanuel and its impact on the community — it’s a difficult story to tell, but one that has resonated with people all over the world. Now, two upcoming books seek to translate the events of the night of the shooting and honor the lives lost on June 17, 2015.

The Post and Courier has entered into a deal with St. Martin’s Press to publish a book detailing the shooting at Mother Emanuel, the forgiveness shown by the families of the victims, and the lasting effects of this tragic event. Eyeing a 2017 release date, the publication will be authored by Post and Courier reporter Jennifer Berry Hawes, who will work alongside fellow Pulitzer Prize-winner Glenn Smith, public service editor for the Charleston daily. Proceeds that The Post and Courier and Evening Post Newspapers receive from sales of the book will be used to fund a minority journalism internship program.

“We are honored to take on the task of helping the nation understand the events of June 17, 2015, and the impact of this tragedy on the victims’ families and the community of Charleston,” said P.J. Browning, publisher of The Post and Courier and president of the Evening Post Publishing Newspaper Group.

Providing another perspective on the shooting at Mother Emanuel and examining how this event fits into Charleston’s history, South Carolina poet laureate Marjory Wentworth, former reporter Herb Frazier, and College of Charleston history professor Dr. Bernie Powers have joined together to write We Are Charleston: Tragedy and Triumph at Mother Emanuel. Set for release on June 14, the book will examine the stories of the victims, the survivors, and their families in the context of history of the AME Church.

The book is available for pre-order at and major online retailers.

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