Set in and around Jacksonville, Florida, Dantiel Moniz’s first collection of stories follows a group of Black and Brown girls and women as they navigate life – enigmatic friendships, failed relationships, fractured families, and the judgment of the church. I love the way Moniz gets inside each character’s psyche – by the end of each story, I felt that I truly knew Ava and Rayna and Billie and Frankie and Shayla.— Daniel Goldin
February 2021 Indie Next List
“Milk Blood Heat grabbed me and wouldn’t let go. The prose blisters with a beauty so raw and intense it borders on horrifying. With widely differing characters, voices, and settings, each story makes its own unique contribution to the collection, yet each propels the reader onward in turn. Dantiel W. Moniz is a jaw-dropping new star on the literary stage.”
— Audrey Beatty, River Bend Bookshop, Glastonbury, CT
SHORTLISTED FOR THE PEN/JEAN STEIN AND PEN/ROBERT W. BINGHAM AWARDSA NATIONAL BOOK FOUNDATION 5 UNDER 35
"A gorgeous debut" (Lauren Groff) from Dantiel W. Moniz, one of the most exciting discoveries in today's literary landscape, Milk Blood Heat depicts the sultry lives of Floridians in intergenerational tales that contemplate human connection, race, womanhood, inheritance, and the elemental darkness in us all.
A livewire debut from Dantiel W. Moniz, one of the most exciting discoveries in today's literary landscape, Milk Blood Heat depicts the sultry lives of Floridians in intergenerational tales that contemplate human connection, race, womanhood, inheritance, and the elemental darkness in us all. Set among the cities and suburbs of Florida, each story delves into the ordinary worlds of young girls, women, and men who find themselves confronted by extraordinary moments of violent personal reckoning. These intimate portraits of people and relationships scour and soothe and blast a light on the nature of family, faith, forgiveness, consumption, and what we may, or may not, owe one another.
A thirteen-year-old meditates on her sadness and the difference between herself and her white best friend when an unexpected tragedy occurs; a woman recovering from a miscarriage finds herself unable to let go of her daughter--whose body parts she sees throughout her daily life; a teenager resists her family's church and is accused of courting the devil; servers at a supper club cater to the insatiable cravings of their wealthy clientele; and two estranged siblings take a road-trip with their father's ashes and are forced to face the troubling reality of how he continues to shape them.
Wise and subversive, spiritual and seductive, Milk Blood Heat forms an ouroboros of stories that bewitch with their truth, announcing the arrival of a bright new literary star.
About the Author
DANTIEL W. MONIZ is the recipient of the Alice Hoffman Prize for Fiction, the Cecelia Joyce Johnson Emerging Writer Award by the Key West Literary Seminars, and a Tin House Scholarship. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in the Paris Review, Tin House, Ploughshares, the Yale Review, Joyland, McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, and elsewhere. Milk Blood Heat is her first book. Moniz is an Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches fiction. She lives in Northeast Florida.