David Brendan Hopes

David Brendan Hopes, whose novel The Falls of the Wyona was chosen for Red Hen Press’s 2017 Quill Prize, is a poet, playwright, and painter living in Asheville, North Carolina. Originally from Ohio, Hopes taught at Hiram College, Syracuse University, Phillips Exeter Academy, and is now Professor of English at UNCA. His prize-winning plays have been produced in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, Seattle, and London, and his publications have been in venues as diverse as Audubon, the New Yorker, and Best American Poetry, 2016.

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The Falls of the Wyona

David Brendan Hopes

Publication Date: May 23, 2019

$16.95 Tradepaper

ISBN: 978-1-59709-893-9


The Falls of the Wyona by David Brendan Hopes confronts friends growing up in Appalachia just after WWII not only with the material threat of the wilderness, but with the uncharted darkness of their own maturing hearts.

In The Falls of the Wyona by David Brendan Hopes, four friends growing up on the banks of a wild Appalachian river just after WWII discover, almost at the same time, the dangerous, alluring Falls and the perils of their own maturing hearts. Seen through the eyes of his childhood friend Arden, football hero Vince falls in love with the new kid, Glen. They have no context for their feelings, and the next few years of high school become a tense, though sometimes funny, artifice of concealment. The winner of Red Hen’s Quill Prize, The Falls of the Wyona is the first of three achieved (and several more projected) novels by this author imbued with the magical atmosphere of Appalachian culture.


SHORTLIST – 2020 Rubery International Book Award, Fiction
SHORTLIST – 2020 Eric Hoffer Grand Prize
FINALIST – 2020 Montaigne Medal
SILVER – 2019 Foreword Book Awards, LGBTQ+


“Dave Hopes grants us entry into the wondrous, highly charged world of young male friendship once upon a time. The setting is lovely and nostalgic. I wanted to know all about it, and I even wished I could live there. But there is trouble underneath, and there are things that just cannot happen. Until they do. A pitch-perfect exploration of the terrors and pleasures of American adolescence.”—David Pratt, author of Wallaçonia and Bob the Book