This title won the Utah Arts Council's 2001 Publication Prize.
Michael Gills was born in Arizona and grew up in and around Lonoke County, Arkansas. At age 33, he returned to the West and explored a radically new landscape seen through the lens of a lifetime spent in the American South. His stories have been widely published, and several in this collection have received critical recognition and selection for New Stories from the South. Gills currently teaches writing at the University of Utah. Why I Lie, his first book, won the Utah Arts Council's 2001 Publication Prize.
..".Disturbingly convincing." "Salt Lake Tribune" Gills has stripped his prose, scraped away vegetation and topsoil to work with a core of unyielding rock. It would seem an unforgiving medium, but he carves wonders: lyric descriptions of hot cramped-kitchen cookery so sizzling that the garlic and onions will mist your glasses. . . ."Why I Lie"sounds one note, but that note is clear and pure and, at 144 pages, it is held not a measure too long. Arthur Salm, "San Diego Union-Tribune," September 1, 2002 These stories are, scene by scene, sentence by sentence, beautifully written clean, gorgeous prose, perfectly pitched. Michael Gills gives us deep blood ties and profound betrayals. He understands both the need to belong and the drive to escape. Suffering and loss are given their necessary place in these stories, but so too are grace and mercy. Buy this book. Read it. You ll be glad you did. Donald Hays, author of"The Dixie Association" Michael Gills s"Why I Lie"is one of the most intense experiences I have ever encountered. Every page is vivid with life, livid with truth. The author has discovered a style with which to fashion the darkest of hours into fierce explosions of light. His pages shudder and throb. This book is unique, invaluable, and not to be missed. Fred Chappell, author of"I Am One of You Forever" " ..".[an] often brilliant debut collection. . . . Despite the love and violence, these stories of Jack and Louisa are love stories." "Tallahassee Democrat" "