Hite’s debut novel, Ghost On Black Mountain, not only became a Townsend
Prize Finalist but won Georgia Author of the Year in 2012.
THE STORYCATCHER WILL BE AVAILABLE SEPTEMBER 10, 2013
LOWCOUNTRY SPIRIT AVAILABLE FOR ALL EREADERS AUGUST 12, 2013
"There is a powerful new southern voice sweeping across the literary landscape and it belongs to Ann Hite. The Storycatcher has all of the ingredients of a great southern novel. Hite brings to life some of the most intriguing and richly drawn characters I’ve ever encountered. Her descriptions are poetic, elegant and breathtaking. The voices of the characters are pitch-perfect and they leap from the pages to become familiar friends. Hite is a born storyteller who has crafted a mesmerizing and haunting tale. The Storycatcher is one that you’ll want to put at the top of your reading stack and savor."
--Michael Morris, author of Man in the Blue Moon, Slow Way Home and A Place Called Wiregrass
Often I feel I’ve channeled the Black Mountain characters from several of my eccentric relatives from long ago. I was born in Georgia and left before I was a year old. I didn’t return for good until I was ten. That’s when my mother brought my brother and me back to live with my grandmother. It was then I began to absorb both the wonderful and eerie tales told by my extended family. One of the first stories I heard upon arrival at my grandmother’s home was about a fighter pilot—an air force base was nearby—had crashed into the house down the street. The eighty-year old home was owned by two old maid sisters: one who had spent her life in a wheelchair and the other caring for her. The whole street ran to watch the fire. Some claim to have seen the pilot in the front seat of the jet trying to get out. Others claim to have heard one of the sisters screaming. The only survivor was the sister in the wheelchair. If that’s not the stuff for stories, I don’t know what is. This atmosphere of tall tales, spells, and spirits gave birth to Black Mountain. I didn’t have a name for the community back then, but I spent many hours writing and forcing my little brother to listen to my stories of ghosts and goblins. Ah, but children do grow up. Or do they?
The fictional community of Black Mountain finally got its name while I was flipping hamburgers in my kitchen one night in the spring of 2004.
Mama warned me against marrying Hobbs Pritchard. She saw the future in her tealeaves, death.
These two sentences shot through my mind in a strong southern voice that was not my own. Nellie Pritchard was alive and begging to tell her story, And so it was to be. Not only did she appear with much to say, but several different characters lined up to tell their tales and inherently tell more about Nellie in the process. Many short stories later a novel appeared: Ghost On Black Mountain.
As some of the old folks on Black Mountain would say: ‘The mountain is alive as me or you. If you listen, you can hear her breath. You can feel her moan. Once you get her in your blood, they’re ain’t no leaving. No matter how far you go it’s the only home you’ll ever know.’
Good reading. Ann