New Book :: Against the Wall

Against the Wall Stories by Alberto Roblest book cover image

Against the Wall
Stories by Alberto Roblest
Arte Público Press, March 2022

In the prologue to this inventive collection, the exhausted protagonist finally reaches the doors to paradise after an arduous journey, but the longed-for entrance doesn’t have a handle or keyhole and there’s no bell or intercom. He considers climbing over it, but the wall reaches to the sky. He thinks of magic words that might open it and even kicks it, to no avail. The long, difficult trip has brought him to nothing except a concrete wall surrounded by desert. The characters in these seventeen stories find themselves with their backs against the wall, whether literally or figuratively. They run the gamut from undocumented immigrants to faded rock and soap-opera stars and even the Washington Monument. The eyes of the world focus on the blackened obelisk, which is covered in millions of insects, as government forces attempt to deal with this national emergency! Several pieces deal with people who are lost or long to go back in time. In one, Ramírez wakes up disoriented to discover he—along with untold others—is trapped in a bus terminal, unable to leave the Lost & Found area that’s piled high with thousands of suitcases, trunks, backpacks and packages.

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