I Never Do This (Paperback)

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This Rust Belt gothic novel presents the unforgettable voice of a young woman, LaDene Faye Howell, who finds herself in police custody recounting her story after her paroled cousin Bobbie Frank appears and engages her in a crime spree.

LaDene Faye Howell has spent her life in the small town of Devola, on an oxbow of the Muskingum River, in southeast Ohio. Her family is conservative and deeply religious, although another branch of the Howell clan are notorious criminals. When one of her outlaw relatives returns from prison, LaDene hopes the two of them may share an evening of fun, or even a spark of romance. Instead, Bobby Frank embroils her in kidnapping their old high school principal.

Taken into custody, LaDene recounts her misadventures in the form of a dramatic monologue. Pledging to "tell all in full truth so help me God," she hopes to keep herself out of jail and perhaps even soften Bobby's likely sentence. She aims to capture her listeners' sympathy by recounting a history she has never shared before: her teenage pregnancy and confinement at an unforgiving evangelical facility for wayward girls.

The heart of the story is LaDene's struggle to live as her own person while remaining true to her heritage and family loyalties. With country noir flair, it touches on spiritual abuse, addiction, family entanglements, and the disenfranchisement of women and young people in fundamentalist settings.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781960573988
ISBN-10: 1960573985
Publisher: Sibylline Press
Publication Date: April 16th, 2024
Pages: 216
Language: English


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