“. . . surreal visions of a Utah where communication with the unseen and not-of-this-world is woven into the psychological landscape . . .” – Salt Lake City Weekly
It has been reviewed by Salt Lake City Weekly.
About the Book
Misfits from the Beehive State
Kristin King, author
Softcover, 134 pgs
Fiction / Short Stories
Availability: The book is available through IndieBound and from Amazon.
An airplane passenger who just wants to leave home is stuck with a magic boarding pass that won’t cooperate. A housewife intent on heaven encounters an angel looking for sex instead. And a young woman begins her descent into schizophrenia, pursued by a fairy tale character.
In this debut collection by Pushcart Prize award-winning author Kristin Ann King, the characters try to fit into paradise, but fall down the rabbit hole instead. Now they’re plagued by mental illness, mystical creatures, and character flaws, and they’re forced to muddle through as best they can.
The result is by turns hilarious, heartbreaking, and downright peculiar.
About the Author
Kristin Ann King is a writer, parent, and activist who lives in Seattle. Her work has appeared in such places as Strange Horizons, Calyx, The Pushcart Prize XXII (1998), and the anthology Missing Links and Secret Histories (2013). She enjoys reading, blogging, her family, coffee, hiking, and more reading. She also enjoys playing with a dollhouse filled with Doctor Who action figures and writing critical essays about the show’s companions.
Patty woke early, tossing and turning. She couldn’t stop running the morning routine through her head. She was going to get up and mop the floor. While it was drying, she would dust the knickknacks and polish the dining room table and chairs. Then she would vacuum the living room floor and crawl along the wall with her edge cleaner looking for dirt. By then, the kitchen floor would be dry and she could get down on her hands and knees to inspect it.
It was going to be dirty, she just knew it. No matter how often she cleaned, the house was dirty. And when she got home from work, her carefully polished and gleaming table had dust. Dust mites were everywhere, even swimming in the sunshine.
She sighed and opened her eyes. If she was going to be working so hard in her head, she might as well get up. She rolled over. Stan wasn’t there. This was bad, because it meant he’d be watching her clean. Patty hated to have people watch her, because she was a little embarrassed about cleaning the same spot twice, three times, sometimes five. Part of her knew it was too much, but the other part couldn’t stop. She cleaned, and there was still dirt–or there might still be dirt, and her throat constricted, and she knew that if she just wiped with furniture polish one more time everything would be OK. But Stan made these little comments.
“It doesn’t have to be perfect,” he’d say, or, “Honey, I don’t mind it being a little messy.” Whenever he said that, her wedding ring tightened and felt as cold as ice. It was the one flaw in an almost-perfect marriage. So he’d be up today, watching her clean. She sighed again.
She got out of bed and reached for her apron. But it was missing one of its strings. Strange. She looked at it, puzzled, then folded it and put it neatly in the mending basket. She went to the closet and got another, then padded out to the hall to open the cleaning cupboard. But it was missing its handle. Had it fallen off? She looked around but didn’t see it.
“Stan?” she called. “Sweetie?” There was no answer. Rattled now, she went into the kitchen to get a glass of water. But the kitchen faucet sprayed all over her. Her heart pounded. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and looked around the room. A few things were missing, small but important items. The knob on the oven, the lever on the toaster. A hinge off the cupboard door. The lid off the sugar bowl.
She started to shake.
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