No Asylum
Fiction
5.5 x 8.5, 240 pp.
Pub Date: 12/14/2014
  paper
Price:        $18.95

978-1-68003-000-6

Published by Texas Review Press

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No Asylum

Steve Sherwood

A mysterious woman comes out of the wheat fields late one night to complicate the life of Chief Ranger Aldo Springer, recently banished to Fort Pawnee National Historical Site in central Kansas.  She demands asylum and backs up her demand by threatening to jump from the highest point in the historical site—a crow’s nest halfway up the hundred-foot mast of the fort’s flag pole.  Against his judgment, Springer conceals her from the security forces of the state hospital, from which she escaped, and risks everything he cherishes to pursue a murderer along a cold trail.

“In this well-conceived and vivid manuscript, the charming Aldo Springer, Chief Park Ranger at Fort Pawnee National Historic Site in Kansas, is in the awkward position of providing cover for Amanda Lowenthal, a 28-year-old escapee from the Pawnee State Hospital for the criminally insane, who murdered her family when she was fourteen. This is a genuinely successful piece of storytelling and character development. It’s humorous and well-paced and structures plausible scenes of intensity and moments of tenderness.”—Publisher’s Weekly

“Steve Sherwood's finely crafted No Asylum is about escape.  Those who escape justice need to be imprisoned.  Those in prisons, most often of their own making, need to escape.  Aldo Springer, a National Park Service ranger, divorced, banished from his beloved Rocky Mountains to the Fort Pawnee National Historic site in Kansas, and loathed by his superintendent, lives without much hope. Serving time in this purgatory, a particularly hot summer in Kansas, he learns to act on his instincts, broaden his heart, take chances, and escape to the small slice of heaven he can create from truth, trust, and love.”—Thomas Fox Averill

STEVE SHERWOOD won the 2003 TRP George Garrett Fiction Prize with his novel Hardwater. His latest book of stories and personal essays will appear in 2014. Steve is the director of the William L. Adams Center for Writing at Texas Christian University, where he has taught writing courses since 1988.

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