An exhilarating, virtuosic story collection about women navigating the wilds of male-dominated Alaskan society
'I didn't want Nobody Gets Out Alive to end - to have to leave behind its warmth and soul and glittering writing, its honesty and its laughter in the dark' Jonathan Lee, author of The Great Mistake
Set in Leigh Newman's home state of Alaska, Nobody Gets Out Alive is a collection of dazzling, courageous stories about women struggling to survive not just grizzly bears and charging moose but the raw, exhausting legacy of their marriages and families. In 'Howl Palace', an aging widow struggles with a rogue hunting dog and the memories of her five ex-husbands while selling her house after bankruptcy. In the title story, 'Nobody Gets Out Alive', newly married Katrina visits her hometown of Anchorage and blows up her own wedding reception by flirting with the host and running off with an enormous mastodon tusk.
Alongside stories set in today's Last Frontier - rife with suburban sprawl, global warming, and opioid addiction - Newman delves into the remote wilderness of the 1970s and 80s, bringing to life young girls and single moms in search of a freer, more adventurous America.
Nobody Gets Out Alive is an astonishingly beautiful collection: wickedly smart, psychologically rich and expertly crafted. Every one of these stories knocked me sideways. Leigh Newman is one of the wisest, funniest and most compassionate writers working today - Molly Antopol, author of The Unamericans
I have never been to Alaska, but it came alive for me from many wonderful angles in Leigh Newman's irresistible fiction debut. I didn't want Nobody Gets Out Alive to end - to have to leave behind its warmth and soul and glittering writing, its honesty and its laughter in the dark. The stories in these pages are, as one memorable character in this book observes of another's tall tales, 'funny and self-lacerating and so horrifically precise about our love and fury for each other.' You feel you're in the company of a writer who has embraced unpredictability and breathes deeply while seeing far - Jonathan Lee, author of The Great Mistake
A thrilling collection. Leigh Newman's indelible characters chart the turbulent waters of hope and regret in an Alaskan landscape that crackles with danger and wonder. These are gritty and powerful stories, from a wildly gifted writer - Laura van den Berg, author of I Hold a Wolf by the Ears
Emotionally astute and slyly funny, Nobody Gets Out Alive is a commanding examination of home, family, intimacy, and self-reliance. With exacting precision and endless wit, Newman gracefully leaps into any perspective she pleases-you get the impression she's not only writing unforgettable, brilliantly complex characters, she's somehow inventing souls. This is a stunningly beautiful debut collection by a masterful prose stylist - Kimberly King Parson, National Book Award Finalist, Black Light
Behold a storyteller completely at home in herself. Each story in Nobody Gets Out Alive flashes a new facet of Leigh Newman's singular style. This is a stellar collection with wit and wisdom galore - Claire Vaye Watkins, author of Battleborn, Gold, Fame, Citrus, and I love you but I've chosen darkness
Nobody Gets Out Alive is a stunning debut collection, with the most generous ratio of wickedly funny details to devastating plot lines. It's a joy to travel through these characters' overlapping Alaskas, where violent longings go thrashing under the frozen stillness of the everyday, and the hard, hot work of navigating the wilderness of family can give way at any moment to 'a dazzle of ice and blue and light - Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!