Press 53 . PO Box 30314, Winston-Salem, NC 27130-0314
Hard Toward Home
by C.D. Albin
8.5 x 5.5 paperback, 156 pages
Publication date: May 3, 2016
C. D. Albin was born and reared in West Plains, Missouri. He earned a Doctor of Arts in English from the University of Mississippi and has taught for many years at Missouri State University – West Plains, where he founded and edits Elder Mountain: A Journal of Ozarks Studies. His stories, poems, and reviews have appeared in a number of periodicals, including Arkansas Review, Cape Rock, Georgia Review, Harvard Review, Natural Bridge, and Slant.
Praise for Hard Toward Home
A new voice from the Ozarks, C.D. Albin crafts a reverent, clear-eyed but heartfelt look at his people, the love, the violence, the myriad forces at work in lives that push the hidden up through the ground, to be seen and reckoned with in surprising ways.
Daniel Woodrell, author of Winter’s Bone
Cover artist Dawn D. Surratt studied art at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro as a recipient of the Spencer Love Scholarship in Fine Art. She has exhibited her work throughout the Southeast and currently works as a freelance designer and artist. Her work has been published internationally in magazines, on book covers, and in print media. She lives on the beautiful Kerr Lake in northern North Carolina with her husband, one demanding cat, and a crazy Pembroke Welsh Corgi. Find more of her work on Flickr and Facebook.
Characters don't talk much in C.D. Albin's unforgettable Hard Toward Home. They have a lot they want to say, but the pressure of love and disappointment, old violence and unforgotten resentment brings them to the very edge of what language can say. And then they find the words, searingly. Written with haunting restraint and understanding, these gorgeous, perfect stories explore the things we want and the things we're capable of, both of which often surprise us.
Erin McGraw, author of The Seamstress of Hollywood Boulevard
Hard Toward Home is hard to put down. The stories grab the reader by the shoulders and give him a good shake. C. D. Albin is a truly accomplished writer and these realistic tales are beautifully paced and composed of characters we’ve all met wherever we were raised. This is fine writing that makes us pay attention to every line, every detail, every character’s movement—all of it necessary. Not a wasted word in the whole book. Not a wasted second of a reader’s time.
Tim Gautreaux, author of The Missing
Hard Toward Home is alive with cross-grained people caught between their pasts and futures and striving to outlast the harm they've done each other and themselves. Albin possesses all the storyteller's gifts of eye and ear and mind and goes them one better by virtue of his heart. These stories are deep and wise and quietly gorgeous.
Janet Peery, author of The River Beyond the World
C.D. Albin’s Hard Toward Home features 10 fine and thrilling stories of the Ozarks and its people. While some debut collections contain a few misfires, Hard Toward Home impresses with solid story after solid story, each fully realized and beautifully rendered. —Ellis Purdie, The Clarion-Ledger