Authors

Rod Val Moore

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Contents

Grimshaw's Mexico -- Igloo among palms -- Thing one and thing two -- Liquid, fricative, glide -- Miss mustachioed bat -- Planet of the evangelists -- An aztec sphinx

Abstract

The stories in this prize-winning volume are set in fictional towns, along highways, and in industries on either edge of the Mexico-California border. The author uses memory and imagination to transform these scenes into a defamiliarized frontera, a region of subtle misplacements and cultural contretemps. In these engaging and extremely human stories, gringos move south and Mexicans move north in a search for growth and difference but find that the border is much more fluid, much harder to definitively cross, than they imagined.

For instance, in “Grimshaw's Mexico,” Officer Grimshaw chauffeurs his family south of the border to buy medicine and is taken aback when his little boy appears to learn Spanish in an afternoon. Years later, back in Mexico, his son grown and gone away to live his life, a con artist gives Grimshaw his last chance to so “something foreign and unforgivable.” “Igloo among Palms,” the title story, tells of a dry-ice deliveryman on a lonely road and the somewhat ghostly hitchhiker he picks up and then loses track of late one summer night. The hitchhiker resurfaces, along with a fast-food waitress, in a date palm garden, and there they must find a way to sort out their respective lives.

These stories are deeply entertaining, full of surprises and unexpected turns that ultimately lead the reader to the narrative's fascinating resolution.

Publication Title

Iowa Short Fiction Award

Award Date

1994

Judge

Joy Williams

Publication Date

1994

Publisher

University of Iowa Press

City

Iowa City

Total Pages

131

ISBN of Print Version

9780877454755

Keywords

City and town life, California, Mexico, Mexican-American Border Region

Rights

Copyright © 1994 by Rod Val Moore. No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or recording, without permission in writing from the publisher.