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F*ckface is a brassy, bighearted debut collection of twelve short stories about rurality, corpses, honeybee collapse, and illicit sex in post-coal Appalachia.
The twelve stories in this knockout collection—some comedic, some tragic, many both at once—examine the interdependence between rural denizens and their environment.
A young girl, desperate for a way out of her small town, finds support in an unlikely place. A ranger working along the Blue Ridge Parkway realizes that the dark side of the job, the all too frequent discovery of dead bodies, has taken its toll on her. Haunted by his past, and his future, a tech sergeant reluctantly spends a night with his estranged parents before being deployed to Afghanistan. Nearing fifty and facing new medical problems, a woman wonders if her short stint at the local chemical plant is to blame. A woman takes her husband’s research partner on a day trip to her favorite place on earth, Dollywood, and briefly imagines a different life.
In the vein of Bonnie Jo Campbell and Lee Smith, Leah Hampton writes poignantly and honestly about a legendary place that’s rapidly changing. She takes us deep inside the lives of the women and men of Appalachia while navigating the realities of modern life with wit, bite, and heart.
Leah Hampton writes about Appalachia, corpses, ecoanxiety, and smart women. Her debut collection, F*ckface and Other Stories, was released by Henry Holt in July 2020. A graduate of the Michener Center for Writers, she has been awarded UT-Austin’s Keene Prize for Literature, the James Hurst Prize for Fiction, and the Doris Betts Prize, and has held fellowships at Hedgebrook, the Adirondack Center for Writing, Wildacres, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Stadler Center for Poetry at Bucknell University. She lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
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