**WINNER of the Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction**
**WINNER of the Mississippi Author Award for Adult Fiction selected by the Mississippi Library Association**
**WINNER of the 2019 Mississippi Institute of Arts & Letters Award for Fiction**
**WINNER of the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for Fiction**
**Finalist for the 2019 Colorado Book Awards for Literary Fiction***
"An ode to William Faulkner. . . . As Southern as it gets."—Deep South Magazine
A compelling addition to contemporary Southern Gothic fiction, deftly weaving together local legends, family secrets, and the search for a missing child.
Siblings Bert, Willet, and Pansy know better than to go swimming at the old rock quarry. According to their father, it's the Devil's place, a place that's been cursed and forgotten. But Mississippi Delta summer days are scorching hot and they can't resist cooling off in the dark, bottomless water. Until the day six-year-old Pansy vanishes. Not drowned, not lost . . . simply gone. When their father disappears as well, Bert and Willet leave their childhoods behind to try and hold their broken family together.
Years pass with no sign, no hope of ever finding Pansy alive, and as surely as their mother died of a broken heart, Bert and Willet can't move on. So when clues surface drawing them to the remote tip of Florida, they drop everything and drive south. Deep in the murky depths of the Florida Everglades they may find the answer to Pansy's mysterious disappearance . . . but truth, like the past, is sometimes better left where it lies.
Perfect for fans of Flannery O'Connor and Dorothy Allison, The Past Is Never is an atmospheric, haunting story of myths, legends, and the good and evil we carry in our hearts.