In this second collection of Kosky tales, Pete once again explores the old traditional ballads to mine their riches for tall tales, wild nights, and a few back in the woods—wild men and women—antics. Pete is skillful at pulling readers into the history of a place and its people. When a character goes on a hunt, we can feel the crisp air and catch scent of gun powder, and we’d swear we’d actually been there ourselves. But if hunting isn’t your interest, we bet looking for gold or Sasquatch, seeing ghosts in caves, or dodging beer cans sailing across the room in a honkytonk just might! He tells it all, with vivid details and in carry-you-away beautiful language. Dip in this second collection, and you’ll be as delighted as you were with his first volume, Mountain Tales & River Stories. Pete Kosky is a champion storyteller and has the ribbons to prove it!
Kosky’s second collection is more than a lush gathering of tales inspired by ballads and historical figures. The mismatched lovers in these pages serve as allegories for the tricky relationship many Appalachians have with this place we call home. We may leave, but the mountains are never far from our minds, from our obsession to capture them with paintbrushes or conjure them from the clouds. We’ve had our share of unsavory (resource-grabbing) partners, but we still fight for our bliss, and sometimes we even win.
– Marie Manilla, author of Patron Saint of Ugly
Peter Kosky is a mountain man at heart, steeped in the traditions and history of his West Virginia home. In this collection of stories, he weaves strands of folklore and legends with elements of ballads and folk tales to create fiction rich in detail and nuance. The Civil War, wild mountain beasts, action and adventure are carefully rendered with historically relevant narrative that transports readers to a more rugged and heroic time and place.
– John Lilly, songwriter and performer