Felt in the Jaw: Stories by Kristen N. Arnett
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Published by Split Lip Press
In her debut story collection, Kristen Arnett, with dark humor, explores the lives of queer women and their families in the light of the bleak Florida sun. A young dancer suddenly loses language while her family struggles to understand their new roles. A mother endures a horrifying spider bite while camping with her daughters in the backyard. A family reunion goes sour when a group of cousins are left to their own devices. In these ten stories, outward strength is always betrayed by deep vulnerability: these are characters so desperate for family and connection that they often isolate themselves--and sometimes, it's the world isolating them.
"Kristen Arnett’s stories are miracles of subtlety and propulsion.
Suffused with a visceral sense of dread, they invariably fold out into
startling moments of affection, sadness, or (dare I say) grace. Like
Flannery O’Connor without the religious preoccupation or occasional
garishness, the stories in Felt in The Jaw are deeply American. They
are also sublime."
--Matthew Specktor, author of American Dream Machine and co-founder of The Los Angeles Review of Books