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Graceful Lies: Twelve Stories

From the award-winning author of the memoir FIELDS OF LIGHT and the novel BEFORE comes this collection of twelve short stories. Joseph Hurka takes us into the lives of characters who wrestle with memory and conscience. "Like Chekhov or Carver," the poet Matt Miller has written, of Hurka's novel BEFORE, "Hurka is able to make us feel empathy for these people by showing that these people are us." The stories of GRACEFUL LIES offer us characters who search for certainty, and who sometimes, in moments of illumination, find salvation.

Fields of Light: A Son Remembers His Heroic Father

Winner of the Pushcart Editors' Book Award. Nominated by Andre Dubus.

Anniversary Edition from Wild Creek Press.

In 1993, Joseph Hurka traveled to Prague to walk in the footsteps of his father, a Czech resistance fighter and American spy. Fields of Light is a tribute to one man's courage, and to the fight for democracy and human freedom.

"Gripping...what emerges--in addition to Hurka's respect for his father--are the difficult choices that Communism forced onto individuals and the dignity that was still possible...this fine memoir is the winner of Pushcart's 19th Annual Editors' Book Award." -- Publishers Weekly Starred Review.

"...a moving picture of Josef Hurka's life...(his son's) book has had a strong impact among those interested in the history of Czechoslovakia, especially among the Czech community in the United States."-- The Prague Post

"...a riveting read." -- The Chicago Tribune

"It's the story of a man who fought for democracy and...the moving account of a son who finally comes to know his father." -- Booklist


"Hurka has accomplished what seems impossible--he has created three very different characters whose stories smoothly interact into an emotional, frightening and compelling novel...beautiful writing." -- Deseret Morning News

"A stunning novel of intrigue and delight. You read this book as if watching a film; the visuals are spectacular, and the meaning of the story reverberates in your mind long after." -- F.D. Reeve, author of My Sister Life

"Set in the lengthening shadows of the twentieth century and the stark sunlight of the twenty-first, Joseph Hurka's BEFORE brilliantly illuminates not only our capacity to do one another great and lasting harm but also our innate desire to rise above the darkness with courage and grace and an enduring faith in what is truly possible in ourselves." -- Andre Dubus III, author of House of Sand and Fog and Dirty Love