The sixty-three fiction writers and poets within this anthology delve deep into the many senses of place that modern West Virginia, the core of Appalachia, inspires. Throughout this collection, we see profound wonder, questioning, and conflicts involving family, sexual identity, class, discrimination, environmental beauty, and peril, and all the sorts of rebellion, error, contemplation, and contentment that an intrepid soul can devise. These stories and poems, all published within the last fifteen years, are grounded in what it means to live in and identify with a complex place.
With a mix of established writers like Jayne Anne Phillips, Norman Jordan, Ann Pancake, Maggie Anderson, and Denise Giardina and fresh voices like Matthew Neill Null, Ida Stewart, Rajia Hassib, and Scott McClanahan, this collection breaks open new visions of all-American landscapes of the heart. By turns rowdy and contemplative, hilarious and bleak, and lyrical and gritty, it is a collage of extraordinary literary visions.