Collin Griffen has changed. His wife suspects infidelity. His mother notices that for the first time in his life, her 28 year old son suddenly has a temper. When things escalate out of control and Collin suffers a psychotic break leading to a violent crime, his small town is in shock. Incarcerated and facing death row, his attorney, Cam Burton, is now tasked with trying to explain his client’s sudden change in behavior and decompensation into violence. Cam soon discovers his client had a spotless past and the only link to violence is his employment at Monarch Industries Slaughterhouse.

But will a jury buy this unprecedented case linking slaughter work to PTSD and violence?

As Collin awaits his fate, Cam discovers that he bit off more than he can chew with this new case. His investigation leads him into the violent underbelly of one of America’s most loved industries and sheds light on the dehumanizing work his client once did. Quiet Man takes place in a small town in North Carolina in the summer of 2016 amidst an increasingly polarized and contentious presidential election and gives the reader a front row seat into the intersecting worlds of classism, institutionalized racism and exploitation of workers, animals and the environment. Quiet Man was a Finalist for the Siskiyou Prize for Environmental Literature.

“In the vein of Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle and Daniel Quinn’s Ishmael, Quiet Man is an intentional tale crafted to unsettle the intellect.
Covid exposed
the human toll of meat-processing plants on its lowest-rung workers,
and Kaufman probes their pain and mental distress to anguishing
effect. Not for the weak-stomached, Quiet Man insists
on our
witnessing the cost of eating meat while maintaining the horror of
slaughter at arm’s length, and the terrible price somebody somewhere
eventually has to pay.” Linda Lowen, NY Times Essayist, Writing Instructor, Publisher’s Weekly Reviewer

“Angela Kaufman’s moving novel, Quiet Man, provides a devastating exposé of the meatpacking industry. The book, set in small town North Carolina, centers on the work of a giant corporation, Monarch Industries, that not only slaughters vast numbers of pigs with the utmost brutality, but routinely injures and dehumanizes its workers.

tells this story with great sensitivity, peppering it with believable
characters and imaginative vignettes. Overall, Quiet Man provides
an exceptionally well-written, powerful indictment of corporate greed
and its devastating consequences. –Lawrence Wittner,
author of Confronting the Bomb

Quiet Man by
Angela Kaufman is a book that grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let
go. A well-told story that explores the life and tragic death of the
men and women whose lives have been destroyed by factory farming and
the subsequent dehumanization of workers and mistreatment of animals.
The story pulls at our heart strings and awakens us to the tragic
conditions for animals and workers subjected to the toxic and
dehumanizing work conditions of the meat packing industry. Quiet Man slams
us awake and asks us to take hard look at the tragic impact that
deregulation and the consolidation of the industry has had on the
health and well-being of slaughterhouse workers, their families, and
our communities. A good read. –Colleen Geraghty

Quiet Man is set in a small town in Mosier, North Carolina in 2016, the location of Monarch Industries: a place where 1000 pigs per hour are killed each day. As a veterinarian working for the Fairness in Farming Project says, “If you write a story about the slaughter industry, you would have a best seller, but you would have to put it on the shelf labeled Fiction.” Or as Ricardo, a man who worked on the chain doing the killing tells it: “electrocuting, slicing, cutting, taking the guts out of squealing pigs… you get fucking crazy.” And “crazy” is what happens to Collin Griffin, a young father who needs employment so badly., he works on that chain for almost a year until in a psychotic, delusional break, he accidently kills his infant son. Collin Griffin, the quiet man, is at the center of this compelling novel and his story is given to us through multiple points of view: his father, mother, and wife; his legal aid lawyer, Cam; his social worker; a vet with his own Traumatic Brain injury who becomes a therapy dog handler who brings his pit bull, Dodger, to visit Collin in jail to finally bring him back to reality. The page-turning is increased by gripping trial scenes as we sit with the jury and many in the town to hear the witnesses, and then Cam and the prosecuting attorney’s arguments to learn the verdict: Will Collin Griffin be sent on to rehabilitation care or will he be found guilty and be executed? –Ginnah Howard,
author of Night Navigation, a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice

from Trash Panda Press

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