As a lawyer from rural Missouri with no connections to the literary world, Nancy Allen’s odds of breaking into the New York publishing scene were less than bountiful. Her novel, however, has been generating buzz. The Code of the Hills (HarperCollins) is a courtroom thriller with a feminist bent. Allen draws upon her childhood in the Ozarks and her 30 years as a lawyer in the mountainous region to craft a mystery about a female prosecutor who takes on an incest case. In an interview with the Voice, Allen recalled being assigned sex crimes as the only woman on staff in her firm, a disturbing workplace habit that compelled her to base her book in part on those experiences. Hear her read tonight.
Thu., May 29, 7 p.m., 2014