Knives, Forks, Scissors, Flames by Stefan Kiesbye is the second publication from Panhandler Books, a series launched in 2015 by Panhandler Magazine and the Department of English and World Languages at the University of West Florida. Distributed by the University Press of Florida, Panhandler Books publishes poetry, fiction, and nonfiction consistent with Panhandler’s mission to champion underrepresented literary genres.
Knives, Forks, Scissors, Flames follows Benno, his wife Carolin, and their six-year-old son, Tim, who is suffering from a mysterious illness. Moving from Berlin to Strathleven, a picture-perfect village on the Baltic Coast, was supposed to be a new beginning for the family. However, shortly after arriving in the country, Benno finds the corpse of a young woman in the woods, and when no one in the village admits to having known her, Benno initiates his own investigation. He digs deep into Strathleven’s superstitions and ritualistic past to recover the history of the murdered woman, yet will he be able to save his marriage and the lives of his wife and son?
“Some towns change with the times while others seem to fall through the cracks, entering an oddly timeless domain. The latter is the case with Strathleven, in which the rituals and darkness of the past seem always to be glimmering just below the surface of a seemingly normal shell,” said Brian Evenson, author of A Collapse of Horse. “Wonderfully controlled and with a very deft, beautifully done tone, Knives, Forks, Scissors, Flames is the sort of thing that might happen if The Wicker Man had been cross-pollinated with one of Friedrich Dürrenmatt’s detective novels.”
“No contemporary writer’s work scares me more than Kiesbye’s. Knives, Forks, Scissors, Flames is gothic and whatever the opposite of pastoral is rendered in his signature spare, whittled-to-the-bone style,” said Jeff Parker, author of Where Bears Roam the Streets.
Stefan Kiesbye is the author of four novels, Next Door Lived a Girl; Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone; Fluchtpunkt Los Angeles; and The Staked Plains. He lives with his wife, Sanaz, and three dogs in the North Bay Area and teaches creative writing at Sonoma State University.
For more information, contact:
University of West Florida • Department of English and World Languages, Building 50
11000 University Parkway • Pensacola, Florida 32514