This hard-hitting collection of creative essays explores the beauty and pain embedded in some of our favorite rough-and-tumble pastimes--roller derby, mixed martial arts, and teaching. Carlo Matos ties it all together with gusto, in a book that will send you reeling to the canvas again and again, and make you return every time for more.
"Whether he's considering the battle scars of jiu jitsu, the anatomy of a roller derby jam, or the allure of a man with a bow, Matos's essays throw you into the ring and the rink; they take you on a ride of both action and reflection. The Quitters never quits; it has the flowing force of a punch thrown from the hip. Matos thinks about toughness with a complex heart; he writes beautifully, honestly, powerfully. You'll be thinking of these lovers and fighters for a long time to come." - Randon Billings Noble, author of Be with Me Always
"Carlo Matos knows how to write and how to fight, and how in both the talented hand can strike without breaking. These essays explore everything from jiu jitsu to Andre the Giant to roller derbies, and though there's always a proximity to violence, Matos explores how close one can get to that boundary before they tap out or go under. Every fighter, whether they are in a ring or at a dinner party or in a classroom, must know when they need to quit and maybe must learn that first. It's not wise to calculate the odds for miracles, but trust me, you can bet on this book." - Traci Brimhall, author of Our Lady of the Ruins and Rookery
"The Quitters isn't about giving up or walking away. It is a flash nonfiction collection about someone at the precipice of quitting, yet persevering despite the odds, whether through grit, stubbornness, or ignorance. Carlo Matos' shorts on sports, identity, and school crack with humor and insight. As a mixed martial arts fighter in "Dead Man's Chest," he recounts how breaking his nose cured him of snoring. As a kid in "Portuguese Paradise," he stomps on the cars of "those who belonged." As he struggles to cope with a student chronically passing gas in "The Quitter is Illuminated," "the quit" may be found in the teacher's eyes but, with The Quitters, at least, quitting doesn't cross the reader's mind." - Steven Teref, author of Foreign Object