Mountain Tales & River Stories


Pete Kosky

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In Mountain Tales & River Stories, Kosky’s short stories and tall tales are steeped in Appalachian and West Virginian history and folklore. He guides the reader into this neglected region and an almost forgotten way of existence, breathing life into old folk ballads, offering haunting, supernatural stories and earthy, humorous tall tales. You’ll feel yourself pulled, almost unwillingly, into stories about deer camps, wood hicks, fiddle tunes, and vengeful spirits. Down by the Kanawha River, speakeasies, river boats, fishing buddies, and roller derby girls entertain. Even the Mothman makes an appearance. Kosky mesmerizes with details so real you’ll swear you can hear the Banshee scream.

“This book is great fun!  Reading this amazing story collection is like attending one of Pete’s music performances; you are thoroughly entertained. Pete combines humor, pathos, fantasy, tenderness, absurdity, mystery, folksy wisdom, and woods lore into a blend of historical fiction and tall tales that is essential reading.”
— Kirk Judd, author of My People Was Music

“Even if you know, or think you know, what it was like back then…even if you know, or think you know, what basic, wrenching, human emotions can do to all of us…Well, you don’t. Not until you read Pete Kosky. He will take you there on a dark yet vivid ride that makes you shudder. And makes you yearn for more.”
— Lee Maynard, author of the Crum series and Magnetic North

“A delightful set of stories ranging from the days of Rimfire Hamrick in Webster County to a night at Charleston’s Empty Glass in modern times. Pete calls upon his experiences as a musician, his trips to mountain men rendezvous, and even his formal education to craft some of the finest West Virginia stories that you will find anywhere.”
— Mack Samples, author of 23 Shots, and The Dark Hollows of West Virginia

About the Author

Pete Kosky is a songwriter and storyteller from South Charleston, West Virginia. He is known for singing traditional ballads and songwriting. He has several CDs of original songs and traditional ballads. Pete also plays the clawhammer banjo and is a past winner of the West Virginia liars contest. In addition to performing at the Vandalia Gathering, he is also a regular at the West Virginia State Folk Festival at Glenville, Allegheny Echoes in Marlinton, and the Gathering at Sweet Creek at Mineral Wells. He is a teacher for Kanawha County Schools and lives in Charleston with his wife Ariana and daughter Claire.