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Thomas Ray Garcia's debut short story collection presents revitalized insights into Texas-Mexico border culture, highlighting tales of resilience while refusing to shy away from the omnipresent reality the river imposes. Written from 2015 to 2020, these stories resist a singular vision of the border, centering the Rio Grande as a site of transformation.
Here, river crossings lead to cross country runs and astral projections. A pregnant teenager learns about motherhood from a curandera. A scholarship boy grapples with his fronterizo identity. The sister of a border patrol agent lives in fear of deportation. A child looks into the eye of a drone and sees his family anew.
The River Runs: Stories won the Américo Paredes Literary Arts Prize for Fiction sponsored by FlowerSong Press from McAllen, Texas and Prickly Pear Publishing from Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Thomas Garcia is a writer, educator, and entrepreneur from Pharr, Texas. At Princeton University, he received the Ward Mathis Short Story Prize for his U.S.-Mexico borderlands fiction. Thomas is the author of the award-winning short story volume The River Runs and the co-author of the historical memoir El Curso de la Raza: The Education of Aurelio Manuel Montemayor. He also is the founder and Executive Director of the College Scholarship Leadership Access Program (CSLAP), which teaches college access classes and connects near-peer mentors to students in the Rio Grande Valley.
Thomas Ray Garcia's new short story collection, The River Runs, won the Am rico Paredes Literary Arts Prize for fiction, sponsored by FlowerSong Press, McAllen, Texas, and sister press Prickly Pear Publishing, Santa Fe, New Mexico. Garcia's compelling stories present life along the Texas-Mexican border, as seen through the eyes of many exciting and complex characters.