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ISBN: 978-1-62557-832-7

More Enduring for Having Been Broken

Publication Date: January 2021

About

A carnivorous ferris wheel, exploding chickens, a theme park that’s home to a god, and a centuries-old Spanish ship found in the Texas hill country. More Enduring for Having been Broken includes stories of children abandoned, forgotten, and ignored, their trauma and the desperate need to survive it. Whether it’s living in a rusted stingray above a tourist shop in coastal Florida, feeding faces to monstrous catfish in Japan, maintaining a derelict and fog-shrouded hotel in South America, or escaping through the labyrinthine caves of Crete, the boys and girls in this collection weather their aloneness in a world touched by the strange and fantastical.

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Excerpt from “Amarna”

I live in a god’s city, but apparently, it’s the wrong god. Mother says it’s blasphemy to be here, and that god lives in churches, but father says god lives wherever he damn well pleases and if mother hasn’t actually met him, maybe his vacation home just happens to be the place we take care of. This place is Amarna, and it’s falling apart. Down, rather. I guess apart makes it sound like it’s coming undone.

It’s okay though that Amarna looks weathered, because it was built to look old. I tell the tourists that the city has stood for 3,346 years, but really, it’s only been eleven. Father completed it the year I was born, and when I tell the tourists that the city is on the bank of the Nile river, I have to ignore the BillyBurger sign that’s eight feet taller than our wall and whisper to them that this year the advisor has predicted the river will rise higher than normal and there’s a chance the city might flood. The tourists drink out of plastic water bottles and smile politely. They feel sorry for the boy who’s also a tour guide and they know, just as much as I do, that the only river Amarna is near is I-37 and that the bellows of the hippos I point out are actually honking car horns. I don’t blame them for not believing. God appears only at sunrise and we don’t even open until ten.

About the Author

© Levi Sherman

Gwendolyn Paradice

Gwendolyn Paradice is hearing impaired, queer, and a member of the Cherokee Nation. Her writing has earned nominations for both the Pushcart and Best American Essays, and her nonfiction, fiction, and poetry have appeared in Assay, Crab Orchard Review, Brevity, Fourth River, Booth, and others. She retains a MA in Nonfiction from the University of North Texas, an MFA from Bennington College, and is currently pursuing a PhD at the University of Missouri, where she lives with her partner. When she’s not weightlifting, playing video games, or trying to read all the books she’s amassed, she writes speculative fiction, nontraditional nonfiction, and bends genre.

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