Scott Gould’s The Hammerhead Chronicles Keeps Flipping Southern Stereotypes, and Awards Season, on Their Heads

For immediate release

The University of North Georgia Press is thrilled to announce Scott Gould, author of The Hammerhead Chronicles, has received the 2023 Eric Hoffer Award for Fiction.

The Author

Scott Gould was born, raised, and still lives in South Carolina. The Hammerhead Chronicles is his fourth book, which has also won the 2022 Independent Press Distinguished Favorite Award, 2022 Indies Today Best Humor Award, and is a 2022 American Writing Awards and 2022 Best Book Awards Finalist. He is a two-time winner of the S.C. Arts Commission’s Individual Artist Fellowship in Prose and the S.C. Academy of Authors Fiction Fellowship. Other honors include the 2022 Memoir Prize for Books, an Independent Press Award, an IPPY Award for Southern fiction and the Larry Brown Short Story Award. Gould lives in Sans Souci and teaches creative writing at the S.C. Governor’s School for the Arts & Humanities.

The Book

The latest novel from critically acclaimed Southern storyteller Scott Gould, The Hammerhead Chronicles explores the effects of grief, racism, homophobia, revenge, love, and loss on an oddball cast of contemporary characters in a small, fictitious South Carolina town . . . oh, and it’s funny.

“This story unfolds deliciously across a medley of distinct voices in a small Southern town: Claude’s almost-ex-wife who has just lost her battle with cancer, his prickly daughter, an intriguing sister-in-law, a confidant at the local bar, a close friend, and a pair of twins who own the local bookstore and who’ve been flirting with a clandestine business. Above all, but not quite beyond it, resides the voice of Claude’s almost-ex-wife, who sees all and knows all as the omniscient narrator. The effect is kaleidoscopic, shifting the perspectives while both imbuing the tale with richness and driving it forward. It draws us ever closer to grief, loss, and the ways we get each other wrong–transmuting instead into the gold of family, friendship, and community.” – The Eric Hoffer Award

The Prize

The Eric Hoffer Book Award honors the memory of the great American philosopher Eric Hoffer by highlighting salient writing, as well as the independent spirit of small publishers. Since its inception, the Hoffer has become one of the largest international book awards for small, academic, and independent presses.

Praise for The Hammerhead Chronicles

“This book reads so fast and so funny that you don’t mind when it grabs you first by the lapels and then by something inside your chest.”

—Elise Blackwell, author of Hunger and The Lower Quarter

“Beautifully crafted, told in a chorus of original voices, The Hammerhead Chronicles evokes its characters in such a way as to render them somehow nextdoor familiar but also as mysterious and complicated as life itself. . . . I read these pages with serious admiration.”

—Michael Knight, author of Eveningland and At Briarwood School for Girls

Scott Gould captures with keen insight and uncanny observation the complexities of human relationships and their inevitable accompaniments of hilarity and heartbreak. Beyond the humor, this is a poignant story about the beauty of life and the enduring powers of hope and love. I loved this book!”

Michel Stone, author of The Iguana Tree and Border Child


The Hammerhead Chronicles

The Hammerhead Chronicles  (ISBN 978-1-940771-77-9) is a 6 inch by 9 inch perfect-bound paperback. Wholesalers can purchase copies from Ingram; individuals can purchase copies from their favorite independent bookstore and other major retailers.

The UNG Press is a scholarly, peer-reviewed press that serves as an extension of our sponsoring university, the University of North Georgia. Our primary function is to promote education and research with a special emphasis on innovative scholarship and pedagogy. Through our partnership with Affordable Learning Georgia and eCore, the UNG Press is the leading press in Georgia for producing Open Educational Resources and Open Textbooks.

For interviews, covers, and/or author photos, contact Ariana Adams at For more information, visit ###

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