A collection of short stories featuring characters who are stuck: in reality, in their lives, in bad decisions and the darker sides of life backlit by the unforgiving heat of the desert. The desert can be as cruel as a neglectful parent, an abusive lover, leaving these characters in a drought of love and nourishment. It is the perfect setting for the women, men, children and even the dead who traverse these stories by Justin Hunter, characters gripped in their own struggle, some finding a way to shed their identities like skins, others able to leap through time, but many of them remaining stagnant and unaltered.
“Justin Hunter is the real goddamn deal. Leaving Arizona is one of the best new collections of minimalist fiction I’ve read in years. Like its title, this book is sweltering, and brutal, and a sort of cross-your-fingers hopeful that proves why hope can be as dangerous as despair. Read this book. Follow Justin Hunter. Seriously, do it. Don’t be a fool.”
— Nick Gregorio, author of With a Difference and Good Grief
“A haunting depiction of young children using drug needles as darts, of someone searching for meaning in the seasons and a female killer, shedding layers of her life daily, like a snake. Hunter’s stories bring you to the heat of the action and dart away oh-so-soon.”
— Isabelle Kenyon, Managing Director of Fly on the Wall Press