The People of Forever Are Not Afraid

by Shani Boianjiu
People of Forever handtype

Lea, Avishag and Yael are school friends in a small town in northern Israel. During dull lessons they play the game Exquisite Corpse and daydream about the boys they fancy. When they hit eighteen they are conscripted into the army.

Stuck on checkpoint duty with fellow soldiers she hates, Lea relieves her boredom by creating an imaginary family life for a dishevelled Palestinian man that passes every day; Yael takes to sleeping with a boy she is training, in between breaking up and getting back together with her boyfriend at home; and Avishag’s days are spent guarding the Egyptian border, catching smugglers and watching Sudanese refugees throw themselves on the barbed wire fence.

They wait in the dust for something to happen, caught in that single, intense second before danger erupts.

Shani Boianjiu was born in 1987 in Jerusalem. She served in the Israeli Defense Forces for two years.  Her fiction has been published in Vice Magazine, Zoetrope and the New Yorker. She is the youngest recipient ever of the US National Book Foundation’s 5 under 35 Award. She lives in Israel.