Dead Fish Wind
by Cooper Levey-Baker
ISBN: 978-1-948692-74-8 paperback 19.95
ISBN: 978-1-948692-75-5 ebook 9.99
5 ½ X 8 ½, 204 pp
Cicely has got problems. Stuck working a crappy job to take care of her deadbeat father, she’s living just a step above homelessness in a town ruled by a remote, affluent elite and stricken with a catastrophic outbreak of red tide. But then Cicely makes a friend, perhaps her first, and she starts dreaming of a way out of her predicament. It’s a scheme that involves stolen placentas and a dangerous outlaw doula that leads to a confrontation with the malignant forces around her and the mother who abandoned her as a child.
In this grim, comic debut novel, author Cooper Levey-Baker tells a bizarre coming-of-age story in prose that is lyrical, gross, tragic, goofy, and maybe even a bit tender.
Cooper Levey-Baker is a writer and journalist. His fiction has appeared in the Sierra Nevada Review and Burrow Press’s Fantastic Floridas series, and his journalism has won multiple awards from the Florida Magazine Association and the Florida Society of Professional Journalists.
What people are saying about Dead Fish Wind:
“For those who adore the dystopic cli-fi, the not-quite-today, the Jeff-VanderMeer-on-a-plate-in-Florida, Cooper Levey-Baker’s Dead Fish Wind does it all. Ciceley, our heroine, in her pasties serving Cub Scouts. Ciceley confronting her father with a boxcutter. Ciceley inching toward happiness with Zinnia, a remote chanteuse. Dead Fish Wind, Levey-Baker’s first novel, is set to explode. But beware the orange-scented golf course, the male nurse in blue scrubs, and, of course, the fish.”
—Terese Svoboda, author of Great American Desert
“The scariest part of Cooper Levey-Baker’s near-term dystopia in Dead Fish Wind is that after our poisoned, red tide summer, that future is already here. Levey-Baker’s heroine, Cicely, scrapes by in an ecologically ruined Florida. One wishes this taut novel, Levey-Baker’s first, could serve as yet another eco-warning. Instead, it’s a guide on the dark choices we will all soon have to make to survive.”
—Tony D’Souza, author of Whiteman, winner of the Florida Book Award for Fiction
“The Florida depicted here is one we know and one we don’t want to know; it is our present and it is our possible future. Levey-Baker’s achievement, through wondrous prose and compelling characters, is to vividly bring us into this debauched and debased world and, perhaps, offer us a plaintive warning. Dead Fish Wind is an important novel from an impressive new writer. It’s not to be missed. “
—Brian Petkash, author of Mistakes by the Lake