"A major contribution to the preservation of the lore and heritage of the Outer Banks." -- David Stick
"The voices ring with authenticity." -- Paul Clancy, Norfolk Virginian-Pilot
How much would you give to talk quietly for just one hour with your great-grandmother? Most likely, almost anything.
But Time rushes by like a hurricane-driven tide, cutting us off from those who went before. It bears away the old voices and the old ways. Bears away what we loved, and what we realize, too late, we still desperately need.
This book’s a bridge to that past. In a series of interviews conducted in the late 1970's and early 1980's, eight elderly people recount their lives on a string of isolated islands off the North Carolina coast...The Outer Banks. These survivors tell of childhood, courting, marriage, and children; of hurricanes, depressions, wars, and death; faith, doubt, love, and fear. They watched the Wright brothers fly; saw U-boats torpedo ships offshore; dealt with blindness and heartbreak and shipwreck.
Now, near the ends of their voyages, they linger for a little while to tell us of The Way Things Were. And they'll tell us more -- if we’ll listen. With a little urging, they'll share their thoughts on the ultimate questions; good and evil, youth and age, triumph and suffering. From the first word, they cast a spell.
"You're sitting out on a screened porch, in a rocking chair, looking out over the moonlit Pamlico. Or maybe you're not old enough for a chair; you're just sitting on the steps, listening to your great-grandparents chatting." Thus David Poyer, a prolific sea story novelist, invites us to listen to voices of real -- not fictional -- people he recorded over several years on North Carolina's Outer Banks, voices that, like the shifting shores of the thin barrier islands, are highly perishable....
David Poyer is a nationally known novelist with close ties to the Outer Banks of North Carolina, to which this book is a tribute. Millions of copies of his thirty-plus books are in print, including national bestsellers and such favorites as The Return of Philo T. McGiffin, The Med, Hatteras Blue, The Gulf, The Circle, and a Civil War at Sea Trilogy that begins with Fire on the Waters (Simon & Schuster). Along with this book, Northampton House has republished his four Hemlock County novels, The Dead of Winter, Winter in the Heart, As the Wolf Loves Winter, and Thunder on the Mountain; and two other early novels, The Only Thing to Fear and White Continent. Poyer lives on Virginia's Eastern Shore with his wife and daughter, and teaches in the Creative Writing Program at Wilkes University, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.