Down in the Flood


Down in the Flood is my story collection, published by Iris Press.

"Down in the Flood is a book by a writer at the apex of his creative powers who shows no sign of those powers flagging. One might be tempted to say that even Whisnant´s weaker pieces are better than many writers´ best—but there is no weaker work in this book. Luke Whisnant is writing some of the best stories in the country today."

—James Owens in The Pedestal Magazine

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"Whisnant’s humor and obvious affection for his characters—his eccentrics and jilted lovers, the ranks of the disappointed that populate his fiction—are what makes this collection so engaging. Like many fiction writers in the postmodern world, he seems to find the traditionally plotted story, the story that doggedly climbs the slope of Freytag’s triangle and then neatly descends the other side, at odds with the experience of the people he knows. Their lives lack linearity, and they don’t fit the familiar templates or follow the old maps. It is as if plot . . . has become so predictable, so unexpressive and static—one more thing they told you in high school that doesn’t play in the real world—that the power of animation, the power of naming, has returned to the noun. . . . The cause/effect relationship that is the basis of plot escapes [his characters]. They have memory but no timetable, and in these stories images have more structural power than events. . . . To name a thing precisely is to give it life, and Luke Whisnant’s stories are a lively read—so much fun that one might miss the intelligence behind them, but make no mistake: this is an artful work whose shape is a highly crafted expression of its vision."

—Lee Zacharias in North Carolina Literary Review

Down in the Flood cover photo: "Bridge," by Peter Groesbeck.