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Author Anne Black Gray to appear in Mountain State in May
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - You think you know who they were, why they fought, why they died. You know only the legend—now experience the real feud. "The Devil’s Son: Cap Hatfield and the End of the Hatfield and McCoy Feud," a brand new book by Woodland Press and penned by Anne Black Gray, is a vast historical epic that breathes life into the individuals and families on either side of the Tug River.
Considered an expert on the feuding Hatfield family, she was recently interviewed, along with others, for a documentary on the Hatfield and McCoy feud to air nationally on the History Channel on Fri. evening, May 25th, 2012, a few nights before a three-night dramatic mini-series debuts, May 28-30th, on the feud starring Kevin Costner. The interview was conducted by director Mark Cowen, who was also the director/producer of the Emmy®-nominated HBO documentary, BAND OF BROTHERS: We Stand Alone Together. Her book is also being used as background material for the documentary.
Anne will be appearing at a variety of book events throughout the Mountain State in May, all in conjunction with the official release of "The Devil's Son," and loosely coinciding with the airing of the documentary. Geoffrey Cameron Fuller, who wrote the foreword for the novel, will be joining Anne at several of the state events.
Here is the current event schedule:
-- Sat., May 12, from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m., Charleston Town Center Books-A-Million will host The Devil's Son Book Release Party, with Anne Black Gray and Geoffrey Cameron Fuller. Located on second floor, at 3000 Charleston Town Center, Charleston, WV 25389.
-- Sun, Mother's Day, May 13, 2:00 - 4:00- Charleston Town Center Books-A-Million will host The Devil's Son Book Release Party, with Anne Black Gray and Geoffrey Cameron Fuller. Located on second floor, at 3000 Charleston Town Center, Charleston, WV 25389.
-- Tues., May 15th, 4:00 - 6:00 - Reed's Gift Shop, South Side Mall, South Williamson, KY. The booksigning event will include Anne Black Gray and Keith Davis. Located at 275 Mall Rd., South Williamson, KY 41503.
-- Wed., May 16th, from 6:00 - 8:30 p.m. - The Devil's Son author Anne Black Gray will appear at Morgantown Barnes and Noble, University Town Centre, 3000 University Towne Centre Dr., Morgantown, WV 26501.
-- Thurs., May 17th, 5:00 - 8:00 p.m., The Devil's Son author Anne Black Gray will appear at The Gallery, Grand Central Mall, 348 Grand Central Mall, Vienna, WV 26105.
-- Fri., May 18th, 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., Dudley Farms Mall Books-A-Million will host The Devil's Son Book Release Party, with Anne Black Gray and Geoffrey Cameron Fuller. Located at Dudley Farms Plz 212 RHL Blvd Charleston, WV.
-- Sat., May 19, from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m., The Devil's Son Book Release Party, Huntington Mall Books-A-Milion will host Anne Black Gray and Geoffrey Cameron Fuller. Located at Huntington Mall, 1-64 & Mall Rd, Barboursville, WV 25504-1834.
The author grew up in Parkersburg, WV. She graduated with a degree in physics from Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh, then went on to spend thirty-five years as an engineer and manager in the aerospace industry in Los Angeles. She has now added a writing career to her engineering experience.
"When I was a child, my mother and her sisters often spoke fondly of their Uncle Cap," Anne explained. "One Easter, when they were children, he gave my aunts baby ducks and my mother a baby rabbit, by far the nicer gift in her estimation. Mother told me Cap was 'your Granddaddy’s friend.' Since Granddaddy was a reserved, well spoken man, a West Virginia mayor, state senator, and judge of the circuit court at one time or another, I pictured my mother’s uncle as a man with similar traits and disposition. Cap died six years before I was born, denying me any opportunity to know him personally."
Years later, as an adult, Anne came to learn that “Uncle Cap” was Cap Hatfield, notorious killer and right hand man to his father Devil Anse Hatfield, during the infamous Hatfield-McCoy feuds. It seemed altogether impossible to her that Uncle Cap and Cap the killer could be one and the same. The book, The Devil’s Son, is the result of her efforts, long after her mother’s and aunts’ deaths, to discover how Cap made the great transition he seemed to have made and, concomitantly, how the Hatfield-McCoy feud ended.
"After reading histories, memoirs, two master’s degree theses, and numerous old newspaper articles, I began to put a story together, a story that was never totally clear because information was sparse about many of Cap’s adventures, sources conflicted concerning names of sparring parties and dates of events, and very little was written about motives and interpersonal relationships. In fact, some tales and films portrayed the Hatfields and McCoys as cartoonish, irrational figures. To put together a coherent story, I had to re-create motives and conversations and provide scenes of life inside the Hatfield family. When data were sparse or conflicting, I chose words and actions that fit the flow of lives and the changes in them. That is, I have written a novel, not a history. The characters, events, and settings in southern West Virginia and northern Kentucky in the 1880s are actual, but conversations and details of some events are fictional.
"I have traced the flow of Cap’s life as though mapping the course of a river I have never seen and never can see. There are good, detailed maps of some portions of the river and stretches where no information at all is available or where sources conflict. Because a river is prevented from excursions that defy physical laws, such as gravity, one can draw a reasonable likeness of its course between known points. I have mapped some of Cap’s life in just such a way, making informed guesses about its flow between known events," she said.
Anne Black Gray is married, lives in Los Angeles, and has two grown daughters and two baby grandsons.
Woodland Press is an independent book publishing firm located in Chapmanville, WV. For additional information about The Devil's Son and its author, see www.woodlandpress.com.
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