What Are You Afraid Of?

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Paperback ISBN-13: 9781574412017
Paperback ISBN-10: 1574412019
Physical Description: 5 1/2 x 8 1/2. 176 pp.
Publication Date: December 2005
Series: Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction | Volume: 4
  • Winner of the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction, 2005
  • Runner-up in Fiction for Great Lakes Colleges Association Award, 2005

Powerful and haunting, the ten stories of this debut collection imagine a world where dreams and reality merge, often with dangerous consequences. Michael Hyde explores the relationships between illusion and reality, delusion and clarity, as his characters come to realize that the revelations they wholeheartedly pursue are often not the ones that await them and will move them. A teenage girl obsessed with the death of a classmate hopes to become the killer's next victim, a wayward graveyard attendant punishes the dead for his punishments in life, and a ghostly vision in a garden shed offers a catalyst for one woman's change.

"Michael Hyde’s stories are strangely satisfying and satisfyingly strange. They combine the gothic sensibility of Flannery O’Connor and the restrained prose of Raymond Carver. These are tales of love-in-extremis. They should be taken as a tonic before bedtime, to stir up our dreams and awaken our compassion."—Sharon Oard Warner, judge, author of Learning to Dance and Deep in the Heart

"Katherine Anne Porter would be thrilled that Michael Hyde is winning an award in her name. His work is marked by the precision of language she so prized, and his forebears are writers she nurtured and cherished. This collection is strong, original, and precious."—Mary Gordon, author of Pearl and Final Payments

"A brilliant debut, a delightfully harrowing read, and a herald of great things to come. Hyde’s stories take no prisoners."—Pinckney A. Benedict, author of Town Smokes and The Wrecking Yard

The Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction is awarded annually to a collection of short-shorts, short stories, or a novella. The winner receives $1,000 and publication by the University of North Texas Press.

About Author:

Born in Pennsylvania, MICHAEL HYDE received his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and M.F.A. from the Writing Program at Columbia University. His short fiction has appeared in Ontario Review, Bloom, Xconnect, Mars Hill Review, New Millennium Writings, and The Best American Mystery Stories. He lives in New York City where he teaches writing and literature at the Fashion Institute of Technology and has recently completed a novel.