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road of five churches

 

Road of Five Churches
by Stephanie Dickinson

In this debut collection of short stories told in lush, humid prose the protagonists are all young women, many of them teens, trying to survive the extreme situation. There is Hatchet, accused by her Lakota brethren of being an FBI informer; Trout, a fundamentalist Christian with four children and another on the way; Kimchee, a Korean orphan; and Jasmina, imported from the Balkans for the sex trade. In “Fire Maidens, ’57,” Monarch helps her father sick from the radioactive “death dust” kill himself. This is the above ground atomic bomb testing Nevada of the 1950s. (Fish International Fiction Competition Third Prize Winner). “A Lynching in Stereoscope” is told in two first person accounts.

Ciz and Jelly weave an interlocking narrative of a woman lynched in 1930s Arkansas and a home health aide who discovers that the elderly brother and sister she’s caring for did more than witness the event as children, (selected by Dave Eggers for inclusion in Best American 2005 Nonrequired Reading Series). In the title story “Road of Five Churches,” two grifters, a mother and daughter who wander the south selling bogus vacuum sweepers, are revealed to be a grown missing toddler and the woman who abducted her (winner of 2003 Pearl Fiction Prize). “Amiga Mom from Planet Iraq” tells the homecoming of Sgt. Bethany Telecky, a disabled Iraq War Veteran, whose job was detonating bombs in a country wanting to “blow itself up into smaller and smaller bits of dirt and dust.” She loses her left arm and part of her face in an IED explosion (awarded a New York Foundation for the Arts 2006 Fellowship in Fiction). An intense, lively read, often darkly humorous, these stories never fail to lyrically entertain.

 

 

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  Road of Five Churches - $14.00
 

 

Website: stephaniedickinson.net
 

 

 

Excerpt:
Amiga Mom From Planet Iraq
       
Stephanie Dickinson raised on an Iowa farm, has lived in Oregon, Texas, Louisiana and now New York City, a state unto itself. Her novel Half Girl is published by Spuyten Duyvil as well as the novella Lust Series. Her work has appeared in many journals most recently Fjords, Nimrod, Hotel Amerika, Weber Studies, Tusculum Review, Lit n Image, and WIP Works In Progress. Her story “A Lynching in Stereoscope” was reprinted in Best American Nonrequired Reading and “Dalloway and Lucky Seven” and “Love City” in New Stories from the South. She is the winner of New Delta Review’s 2011 Matt Clark Fiction prize judged by Susan Straight, and a finalist in the 2012 Starcerone Book Prize for Innovative Fiction. Heat: An Interview with Jean Seberg will be published by New Michigan Press in its 2013 chapbook series. Along with Rob Cook she edits Skidrow Penthouse.  
 
 

 

 
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