Three debut novels forthcoming from Hub City Press in 2018
Hub City Press announces the forthcoming publication of three novels in 2018.
In early spring, Hub City will release Leesa Cross-Smith’s debut novel WHISKEY & RIBBONS, set over the course of one snowed-in weekend, where a fallen police officer’s widow and his best friend must confront the feelings they have for each other after his death. In the vein of Jojo Moyes’ After You, WHISKEY & RIBBONS explores the life that continues beyond loss, with a complicated and yet vital brotherly dynamic reminiscent of Elizabeth Strout’s The Burgess Boys. It’s a meditation on grief, hope, motherhood, brotherhood and surrogate fatherhood, and a requiem for marriage, friendship and family. Above all, it’s a novel about what it means – and whether it’s possible – to heal.
A PEN Open Book Award Nominee, Cross-Smith has been a finalist for the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction and Iowa Short Fiction Award. She is the author of the short story collection Every Kiss a War (Mojave River, 2014) and lives in Louisville, Ky.
The novel was sold by Kerry D’Agostino at Curtis Brown, Ltd.
In late spring, Hub City will release Thomas McConnell’s debut novel, THE WOODEN KING. In McConnell’s novel, set in German-occupied Czechoslovakia in the 1940s, Vicktor Trn’s life is slowly stripped away as creeping authoritarianism envelopes his city and his family. In the end, this quiet history professor and man of contemplative pacifism finds himself caught between two titanic armies—the Nazis and the Soviets—and must decide how to save all that he loves. This heart-pounding World War II story, infused with the tension of Kristin Hannah's The Nightingale, and Anthony Doerr's All the Light We Cannot See, asks what is a peaceful man to do when totalitarianism takes everything he holds dear.
McConnell’s collection of stories, A Picture Book of Hell and Other Landscapes (Texas Tech University Press, 2005) was nominated for the PEN/Bingham Award and the John Gardner Award for Short Fiction. Educated at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee, and at the University of Georgia, he is professor of English at the University of South Carolina Upstate in Spartanburg. A Fulbright Scholar in the Czech Republic for 2005-2006, he taught American literature and creative writing at Masaryk University.
In fall 2018, Hub City will release WHAT LUCK, THIS LIFE by Kathryn Schwille. The space shuttle Columbia and its contents rain down on the people of Kiser, Texas, in this imaginative debut that takes place six weeks before the start of Iraq War. The scatter lies at their feet, the reporters bluster at their doors and the people of the Piney Woods watch as their pastures swarm with searchers. Schwille's parallel narratives, which take place in a nursing home, a grocery, and in the yard of a short-wood hauler, among other locations, unfold amid the undercurrents of class, race, and fickle fate. It's a book of epiphanies with heart-breaking characters who evoke the townspeople of Sherwood Anderson's classic Winesburg, Ohio and Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge.
Schwille is an MFA graduate of Warren Wilson College and a former editor at the Charlotte Observer. Her short fiction has appeared in Memorious, Crazyhorse, West Branch, Sycamore Review, Puerto del Sol, River Styx, New Letters and other magazines. Her work has twice been cited for Special Mention in the Pushcart Prize. She lives in Charlotte.