a taste of Hold Off the Night

from the story collection Hold Off the Night by Teresa Burns Gunther, published May 2023


ISBN (paperback)  978-1-922427-00-7

ISBN (ePub)  978-1-922427-18-2

ISBN (Kindle)  978-1-922427-45-8

to purchase the paperback, click here

to purchase the eBook, click here for:  ePub*  Kindle

* ePubs can be read on all Apple devices, and all eReaders except Kindle


A good mother would have faith, get a grip, ask about the stealing, the pot and condoms, the dented Honda Civic, and what she hoped, but doubted, was a henna tattoo.  from Where Are You, Really?

She closed her eyes and heard her mother saying, “You let him take your keys! He has a beard; he must be hiding something!” And she laughed.  from Lilies

She moved like she ran on music, and he imagined that if he put his ear to her belly, he’d hear a melody.  from A Hard Man to Find

She moves the ashtray on the gingham grid of the tablecloth like a chess piece and smokes while she waits, as she waits every afternoon, for the mail truck to turn down her drive.  from A Whole Hand

The men hunched at the counter stopped arguing about the Rangers to peek over their shoulders. They were always there, like part of the furniture, talking, drinking coffee, telling jokes, and teasing Mama. Always teasing.  from Magic Fingers

Molly’d grown to hate the sun’s fall to suppertime, listening for the sound of those tires coming home, measuring the bang of the front door to know the evening’s weather.  from Wake

Pale hair swung loose at her shoulders. My sisters and I weren’t allowed to wear ours down—“It makes a girl look loose”—Mother said, but this girl clinging to the door handle looked tied up in knots.  from Abundance

“Atta girl,” he says and wonders if this is something he’s inherited: ramping things up when they’re coming apart.  from War Paint

He searches the shop until his eyes meet Michele’s and his face breaks into a smile of dark empty spaces.  from Patch of Grass

Davis liked to think he was a good father, a good provider, but once the girls hit twelve, they moved to a different country where their bodies changed, where they spoke a private language, and became secretive and critical of him.  from Finger Food

Toni’s father looked confused, then his jaw tightened, and Toni figured this guy was a boss jerk who didn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground.  from Wild Places

“He’s got too much girl in him,” her father said. Oh, they’d loved him, but their love smacked up against the Temple walls and its inlaid stones.  from Save Me


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