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The Watery Part Of The World

Book cover, ''The Watery Part of the World''

Aaron Burr, Vice President for Thomas Jefferson’s cabinet, fathered only one child that survived past infancy. Her name was Theodosia Burr Alston, a well-educated and accomplished woman who was highly respected in her time. In the winter of 1812, Theodosia mysteriously disappeared on a ship voyage from South Carolina to New York.

Historians have theorized that her vessel either shipwrecked or was captured by pirates who murdered those aboard. But in Michael Parker’s new novel, “The Watery Part of the World” (Algonquin/2011), Theodosia survives the ship’s tragic fate and becomes one of a handful of inhabitants on a remote island in North Carolina’s Outer Banks. There, she bears several children and befriends an African-American caretaker named Woodrow. The book bounces back and forth between the narratives of Theodosia, her two daughters and Woodrow to paint a complete picture of island life and the isolation that comes with it.

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.