Join us for a special book launch event with Hub City Press author, Maris Lawyer, on June 24th at 7PM! Her debut novel, The Blue Line Down, is the winner of the 2020 South Carolina Novel Prize and publishes on June 22nd. We are so pleased to welcome Maris Lawyer to the Hub City family!
Please note: This event will be available for 20 in-person seats at Hub City Bookshop (ticket price is for a signed copy of The Blue Line Down). For those who aren't able to attend in person, we will also stream live on Facebook!
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From debut novelist Maris Lawyer, The Blue Line Down is a breakneck tale of betrayal, loyalty, and unexpected homecoming.
"The Blue Line Down is an exhilarating tale of family lost and family found. Jude Washer’s fight to heal his past as he makes his way through the turbulent world of 1920s coal mining and bootlegging is unforgettable."—Jessica Handler, author of The Magnetic Girl
Jude Washer wants to run: away from the coal mines where he is destined to work, away from his father’s abuse of his little brother, away from the prison-like confines of his village. Whispers of unionizing ripple through the small West Virginia mining town. When the mines take Jude’s brother away from him, Jude takes matters into his own hands. With nowhere else to go, Jude joins the Baldwin-Felts Agency, a band of violent men dedicated to stamping out unionizers across the mountains.
It is 1922, and the Baldwin-Felts are poised to raid a mining town in Virginia. When the coal miners fight back against the agents, Jude, now twenty-four, and Harvey, a new recruit, take an opportunity to flee amid the bloodshed. With the Baldwin-Felts on their tail, Jude and an injured Harvey make their way down the mountains, where they are intercepted in South Carolina by a ragtag gang of bootleggers who put them to work to pay off a debt. Jude is desperate for a place to call home, but can he find it in these hardscrabble hills among strangers?
"The Blue Line Down never lets up. Maris Lawyer has spun a tale of violent grace and surprising warmth that moves at the pace of a thunderbolt, carrying the reader right into the troubled heart of the Appalachian coal wars and Carolina bootlegging days." —Taylor Brown, author of Gods of Howl Mountain
Maris Lawyer is a born and bred native of the South Carolina Upstate. She graduated with a degree in creative writing from Anderson University and has since gone to work as an HR generalist for an environmental consulting firm in Greenville, SC. Maris lives in Easley, SC with her husband Benjamin and two cats, Merlin and Luna. Alongside reading and writing, Maris spends much of her time fussing over the vegetable garden in her back yard.