Gone by Sundown

Peter Leach

Winner of the Gival Press Novel Award - 2010.
Independent Publisher Book Award—Bronze Medal for Best Regional Fiction: Mid-West - 2012

Based on a Depression-era event, Gone by Sundown is about black suspects in a fatal shooting of two white men being whisked out of town to protect them from enraged townspeople. Within a day, hundreds of black residents were evicted, many of whom worked for cheap wages at the local mine.

"Almost no other novel treats the creation of sundown towns. Gone by Sundown thus amounts to a one-volume antidote to American amnesia. On top of that, it's a good read."—James W. Loewen


"Gone by Sundown takes us into a world and sensibility that is fresh, resonant and provocative. Peter Leach writes of a great wrong done by ordinary people, and does so with quiet fervor, displaying sadness and pity for all."—Daniel Woodrell


"Gone by Sundown is an extremely timely novel that traces the origins of a racist atrocity and its effects on residents from bottom-dwelling working class blacks and whites, to the 'French colored' and merchants higher up the social ladder, to union agitators and mine owners at the top of local society. Peter Leach has the story-teller’s heart of Harper Lee and the sociologist’s eye of Frank Norris." —Tim W. Brown


Peter Leach

Peter Leach was born and grew up in St. Louis. He attended Amherst College, spent two years in the Cold War army in Germany, then studied playwriting at Yale Drama School. He has taught at Bryn Mawr College, the University of Louisville and currently teaches in the night-school at Washington University in St. Louis. His short story collection Tales of Resistance won the George Garrett Prize and was published by Texas Review Press in 1999. His work has appeared in Virginia Quarterly Review, Minnesota Review, Indiana Review, River Styx, Panache, Artful Doge, and Kansas Quarterly. One of his stories was reprinted in an O. Henry Awards and another in an NYU Press Best Little Magazine Fiction. His story The Convict's Tale won the Nebraska Review fiction prize. Leach received a National Endowment for the Arts creative writing fellowship.