Pisgah Press-published ‘Gabriel’s Songbook’ is a Wolfe Literary Award nominee

Press release from Pisgah Press:

Pisgah Press, Asheville-based publisher of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and memoirs, has learned that its most recent release, Gabriel’s Songbook, a novel by Michael Amos Cody of Jonesborough, TN, has been nominated for this year’s Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award. Cody will appear at Blue Ridge Books at 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 21, to read (and perform original music) from the book, and will autograph copies for those who buy or bring them. The bookstore is located at 428 Hazelwood Avenue, Waynesville (828-456-6000). www.blueridgebooksnc.com

The award

The prestigious Wolfe Literary award was first given in 1955 to legendary Asheville author Wilma Dykeman for her seminal work, The French Broad, and has since been bestowed on such luminaries as Wayne Caldwell (Requiem by Fire, 2010), Charles Frazier (Cold Mountain, 1997), Gail Godwin (A Southern Family, 1987), and John Ehle (Last One Home: A Novel, 1984).

The book

Published in December 2017, Gabriel’s Songbook is a living portrait of the artist as a wayward musician. Gabriel Tucker is a young man whose talent and ambition carry him from the hills of Appalachia to the grime and glamour of Nashville … and back home again. Gritty and lyrical, rock ‘n’ roll and old-time country, it transports the reader deep into that age-old dream of making the big time, and shows us the beauty, pathos, and psychological danger that lurk underneath.

The author

Cody is a longtime professor in the Department of Literature and Language at East Tennessee State University. After working as a songwriter in Nashville, he earned his PhD in English from the University of South Carolina. His short fiction has appeared in The Tampa Review, Yemassee, and other publications, and his albums include Homecoming and Wonderful Life. Gabriel’s Songbook is his first novel.

The recognition

Other writers and reviewers have praised Gabriel’s Songbook. Jeff Mann, author of Country, calls the novel “gripping, poignant, and unforgettable … Artistic ambition, first love, small-town Appalachian life, along with the image-obsessed machinations of the Nashville music industry: all ring so true.”

Mark D. Baumgartner, editor of Aethlon: The Journal of Sport Literature, notes that “Cody writes with the vivid clarity of one who has made it through the punishing Nashville grind and survived, and the passion of a true believer in the power and beauty of the music itself. Behind the glaring lights of Nashville, the late nights, seedy managers and bad deals, is a beautiful tale of redemption and a love story that will stick with you long after the novel is finished.

“Cody is not just a wonderful writer but a top-notch musician and songwriter as well, and that musicality is in evidence on every page—from the heartfelt lyrics that occasionally punctuate the action, to simple moments like a haircut shared between estranged lovers. This is the best novel of the music business I’ve come across in a very long time.”

Charles Dodd White, author of A Shelter of Others and Lambs of Men, describes Gabriel’s Songbook as a novel “full of heart and longing … [that] deserves its distinguished place on the shelf with some of the best stories of the region.”

The publisher

Pisgah Press was founded in 2011 to publish books offering original ideas and insight into the human condition, the realm of knowledge, and the world around us. Pisgah authors include Robin Russell Gaiser, whose memoir Musical Morphine: Transforming Pain One Note at a Time was a 2017 American Book Awards finalist in Alternative Medicine; Dave Richards, a 2014 National Book Awards finalist in History for Swords in Their Hands: George Washington and the Newburgh Conspiracy; Sarah-Ann Smith, author of the acclaimed Trang Sen: A Novel of Vietnam; A. D. Reed, whose Reed’s Homophones was recently featured on the nationally syndicated radio show Says You!; RF Wilson, creator of the Rick Ryder mystery series (Killer Weed, 2014; Deadly Dancing, 2016); and poets Donna Lisle Burton (Way Past Time for Reflecting, 2016; Letting Go, 2012) and Nan Socolow (Invasive Procedures: Earthquakes, Calamities, and Poems from the Midst of Life, 2016).

All Pisgah Press books are available through local bookstores (in stock or special order), direct from the publisher (www.pisgahpress.com), and from Amazon.com in print or eBook format. Contact Editor-in-chief A. D. Reed at pisgahpress@gmail.com for more information.

About Community Bulletin
Mountain Xpress posts selected news and information of local interest as a public service for our readers. To submit press releases and other community material for possible publication, email news@mountainx.com.

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.