Carnegie Mellon University
December 01, 2011

Hilary Masters' Novel "Post: A Fable" Wins a Best Books 2011 Award


Contact: Shilo Rea, 412.268.6094 /

Carnegie Mellon University English Professor Hilary Masters' latest novel, "Post: A Fable" has won a Best Books 2011 Award., the premier online magazine and review website for mainstream and independent publishing houses, announced winners in more than 140 categories covering print, e-books and audio books. Master's "Post: A Fable" won the literary fiction category.

In his 10th novel and 17th book, Masters' used the passenger pigeon plight as the central metaphor. Before their extinction in 1914, when the passenger pigeons migrated, the sky would darken for an entire day. Even as late as 1866, an estimated 3.5 billion birds flocked south, only to be hunted and trapped out of existence a few decades later. It is part-mystery, part-environmental elegy and futuristic tale about ruining things that we love.

In a starred-review for "Booklist," associate editor Donna Seaman wrote, "In a whirl of historic fact, erotic mayhem, and comic suspense, Masters ingeniously connects the bloodlust that drove the once sky-filling passenger pigeon into extinction with endangered forms of culture and love in an uproarious and wise inquiry into why we destroy what awes and sustains us."

Masters also writes essays and works of fiction, including a story in the recently published crime book "Pittsburgh Noir" and the memoir "Last Stands: Notes from Memory." His work has received the Balch Prize for Fiction, the Monroe Spears Prize for the Essay and has been published in Best American Essays, Best American Short Stories and the Pushcart Prize Anthologies. In 2003, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences presented Masters with its Award for Literature.

"Post: A Fable" was published by BkMk Press at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. For more information, visit