Arroyo Circle

ARROYO CIRCLE starts with wildfires, filling Boulder, Colorado with smoke, as Shelley, a white, middle-aged handmaiden to a hoarder is violently confronted by police who believe she put a baby in the trunk of her car. Shelley winds up in the legal system, and in her absence, the hoarder’s house and occupants burn to the ground. Unemployable, Shelley rents out her home and is forced to sleep in an unheated garage. Les, an alcoholic, shape-shifting scientist, lives in the creek bed behind her house and helps her navigate this new world, even as Covid sweeps through town. With a strange mix of quantum physics, Buddhism, and Tito’s, Les teaches her about the healing powers of nature and the deeper meanings of home. Into their midst comes a dazed walker who is more closely connected to Shelley than she can imagine. When the warm Chinook winds blow through the mountains and melt the heavy snows, everyone, including the police, has one last shot at redemption.

Praise for the Writing of JoeAnn Hart

 “Hart does an admirable job of developing memorable flawed characters and letting them loose . . .” —Publishers Weekly

“JoeAnn Hart is an accomplished writer, a writer with a mastery of the subtle, funny detail, a well-developed voice and stories to tell.” —Susan Cheever

Advance Praise for Arroyo Circle

“An ambitious and fast-paced story of wildfire and pandemic and flood told through the eyes of characters living on the margins of our communities and the natural world. Entertaining, sobering, and thought-provoking, Arroyo Circle grabbed me from the first pages. I loved it.”

Ellen Meeropol, author of The Lost Women of Azalea Court

“JoeAnn Hart has achieved the impossible: a beautifully written, page-turner of a novel about the climate crisis. Arroyo Circle, and its richly drawn characters, is urgent, impassioned and revelatory. If the world around us is burning, Hart is the poet/naturalist who will guide us through the flames.”

Laura Harrington, author of A Catalog of Birds

“Against the backdrop of Colorado’s smoke-filled summer skies, JoeAnn Hart brings together an unforgettable cast of characters, drawn together by loss and by living on the edges of a society ravaged by climate change and Covid. Yet in a world where lives change in an instant, what prevails in this remarkable and inventive novel is compassion, hope, and the wonders of nature. At once haunting and witty, vivid and ethereal, Arroyo Circle is a beautifully written ode to our changing world.”

Midge Raymond, author of Floreana and My Last Continent

Arroyo Circle is a compelling story bringing climate change home in the characters of a climate scientist who abandons his job to live homeless and closer to the imperiled earth, letting his wild musings fly, and a woman whose trip to the grocery store becomes a nightmare of misunderstandings and unforeseen consequences. Wildfire, flash flood, hoarding, and pandemic come home to roost in Boulder, Colorado. The climate crisis is not a calamity that happens far away or in a distant future. No. Right here and right now it’s time to face the music and feel the emotional and psychological costs of what we have wrought. This is no sweet song, though small kindnesses, last-ditch efforts at hope, and the gift of an unlikely friendship sing memorably in this powerful novel.

Alison Hawthorne Deming, author of A Woven World:
On Fashion, Fishermen, and The Sardine Dress

About the Author 

JoeAnn Hart is the author of Highwire Act & Other Tales of Survival, a prize-winning collection of short fiction released by Black Lawrence Press in September 2023. Her crime memoir, Stamford ’76: A True Story of Murder, Corruption, Race, and Feminism in the 1970s, (University of Iowa Press, 2019), weaves together the personal and public threads of a friend’s 1976 bow-and-arrow death. Her novels are Float (Ashland Creek Press, 2013) a dark comedy about plastics in the ocean, and Addled (Little, Brown, 2007) a social satire that intertwines animal rights with the politics of food. Her short fiction, articles, and essays have been widely published, including in,, the anthology Dreams of a Broken World, Orion, Solstice, The Hopper, and the anthology Black Lives Have Always Mattered. She lives in Gloucester, Massachusetts, America’s oldest seaport, where fishing regulations, the health of the ocean, and the natural beauty of the world are the daily topics of wonder and concern.

Arroyo Circle
Paperback Original
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 254
Price: $19.95 (CA $26.95)
ISBN: 979-8-9891784-4-5
Publication Date: OCTOBER 2024
Distributor: IPG/Chicago, Ingram.
Rights sold: All rights available.
Rights & PR: Dede Cummings,

Distributor: IPG; also available through Follett/Baker & Taylor, Ingram, and other wholesalers.
Individuals can pre-order directly from, or contact your local, independent bookstore.
Booksellers, libraries, colleges/universities, gift shops, etc., can order through IPG:
Independent Publishers Group
814 N. Franklin Street
Chicago, IL 60610
Order Placement: (800) 888-4741

To request an advance reader copy—digital or print—email