Jac Jemc

author of False Bingo, The Grip of It and My Only Wife

Each story here is a window into a different volatile situation where characters know the punishment for intervention is often more severe than the punishment for indifference. Marbais writes physicality with a visceral, endangered verity that reminds readers what a liability it is to have a body. It’s a perfect book for this moment.

Leslie Pietrzyk

Author of Silver Girl and This Angel on My Chest

These stories of “the disintegrating end of middle class” are taut and piercing and painfully funny, about the kind of gritty people who’d hate being called gritty. Amanda Marbais is the voice we need to listen to right now.

Andrew Ervin

author of Burning Down George Orwell’s House

Amanda Marbais writes without fear about what passes in our society as the new normal. Every sentence reminds us how warm the water is while also insisting that we linger for just one more moment and then for just one more after that. These are marvelous stories.

Dustin M. Hoffman

author of One-Hundred-Knuckled Fist: Stories

In an American landscape strung together by rust and grime, scraped-out humans fight over last scraps and claw at meager paychecks. Every human connection seems tentative and threadbare, in Marbais's stories, all relationships teetering on a razor's edge. Her leading women stare into the void of a post-recession world where men have become volatile waistoids. Danger lurks everywhere throughout this collection, and each story threatens to drive off a cliff. Marbais is a master of tension and gritty realism, but her approach is so unique, laced with absurdity and humor and flashes of surreal. The horror is so intense and inevitable that Marbais's characters tumble into its shadow. This collection is delightfully haunting and has tattooed a flickering neon junkyard into my brain.