Join thousands of book lovers
You can, at any time, unsubscribe from our newsletters.
"e;A vital voice in the short story, telling us new truths with deep humanity."e;-George SaundersCelebrated Nigerian-born writer E.C. Osondu delivers a short-story collection of nimble dexterity and startling originality in his BOA Short Fiction Prize-winning Alien Stories. These eighteen startling stories, each centered around an encounter with the unexpected, explore what it means to be an alien. With a nod to the dual meaning of alien as both foreigner and extraterrestrial, Osondu turns familiar science-fiction tropes and immigration narratives on their heads, blending one with the other to call forth a whirlwind of otherness. With wry observations about society and human nature, in shifting landscapes from Africa to America to outer space and back again, Alien Stories breaks down the concept of foreignness to reveal what unites us all as 'aliens' within a complex and interconnected universe.
Punk-rock feminist poems exploring motherhood, pop culture, and resistance with a spirit of defiance, abundance, and irreverent joyKendra DeColo reaffirms the action of mothering as heroic, brutal, and hardcore. These poems interrogate patriarchal narratives about childbirth, postpartum healing, and motherhood through the lens of pop culture and the political zeitgeist. With references ranging from Courtney Love to Lana Del Rey to Richard Burton to Nicolas Cage, I Am Not Trying to Hide My Hungers from the World revitalizes the way we look at mothering: pushing its boundaries and reclaiming one's spirit of defiance, abundance, and irreverent joy.
Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize-winning poet and nationally recognized literary critic Craig Morgan Teicher's Welcome to Sonnetville, New Jersey is a poetry collection about entering middle age, raising a young family, sustaining a marriage, and taking care of a severely disabled child. Built around two sequences of sonnets, and interrupted by two sets of lyric poems, a set of prose poems, and a long poem about death, the book narrates a family's move to the suburbs and their coming to terms with the ghosts of the past and with hard-to-hold hopes for the future.
Selected by Richard Blanco as winner of the 2019 A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize, Justin Jannise turns the self-help manual on its head in How to be Better by Being Worse.These poems flout, subvert, question, and ignore the rules with exploratory energy. Queer experiences are celebrated-from crushing on long-dead, sad-eyed poets to drag divas dancing at Halloween parties-gender constructs are questioned, and familial transgressions are laid bare for the world.Delightfully modulating between flippant, sincere, and back again, How to Be Better by Being Worse freely indulges in harmless wickedness as its speaker grows in self-awareness, slowly learning to let go of inherited shame while continuing to seek self-forgiveness for the harms he has caused the outside world.
How to Carry Water: Selected Poems of Lucille Clifton celebrates both familiar and lesser-known works by one of America's most beloved poets, including 10 newly discovered poems that have never been published.These poems celebrating black womanhood and resilience shimmer with intellect, insight, humor, and joy, all in Clifton's characteristic style-a voice that the late Toni Morrison described as "e;seductive with the simplicity of an atom, which is to say highly complex, explosive underneath an apparent quietude."e; Selected and introduced by award-winning poet Aracelis Girmay, this volume of Clifton's poetry is simultaneously timeless and fitting for today's tumultuous moment.
Barbara Jane Reyes answers the questions of Filipino American girls and young women of color with bold affirmations of hard-won empathy, fierce intelligence, and a fine-tuned B.S. detector.The Brown Girl of these poems is fed up with being shushed, with being constantly told how foreign and unattractive and unwanted she is. She's flipping tables and throwing chairs. She's raising her voice. She's keeping a sharp focus on the violences committed against her every day, and she's writing through the depths of her "e;otherness"e; to find beauty and even grace amidst her rage. Simultaneously looking into the mirror and out into the world, Reyes exposes the sensitive nerve-endings of life under patriarchy as a visible immigrant woman of color as she reaches towards her unflinching center.
WINNER OF THE 2018 JAMES LAUGHLIN AWARDGeffrey Davis's second collection of poems reads as an evolving love letter and meditation on what it means to raise an American family. In poems that express a deep sense of gratitude and wonder, Davis delivers a heart-strong prayer that longs for home, for safety for Black lives, and for the messy success of breaking through the trauma of growing up during the crack epidemic to create a new model of fatherhood. Filled with humor and tenderness, Night Angler sings its own version of a song called grace-sung with a heavy and hopeful mix of inherited notes and discovered chords.
The long-awaited tenth collection of poetry from the Shelley Memorial Prize-winning poet Lucille Clifton.
The long-awaited collection by one of the most distinguished poets working today.
Brilliantly honed language, sharp rhythms and striking syntax empower Lucille Clifton's personal and artistic odyssey. Hers is poetry of birth, death, children, community, history, sexuality and spirituality, and she addresses these themes with passion, humor, anger and spiritual awe.
Finalist, 1988 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. "e;Clifton mythologizes herself: that is, she illuminated her surroundings and history from within in a way that casts light on much beyond."e;--The Women's Review of Books
In passionate poems about sin, obsession, and mortality-an artist's infatuation with a doll, an interspecies relationship, an ex-lover whose presence lingers in recipes, ecclesiastical birds, and a sex toy holding a loved one's ashes-Waters delivers impeccably crafted narratives infused with his signature lyrical gestures. At the book's core is a sequence of twenty-five poems on aging, dementia, and caregiving, chiseled phrase by phrase toward unflinching and memorable closure. Caw is a brilliant, intimate and moving addition to Waters's body of work and may be his most powerful collection yet.
Mother Country examines the intricacies of mother-daughter relationships: what we inherit from our mothers, what we let go, what we hold, and what we pass on to our own children, both the visible and invisible.As the speaker gradually loses the mother she has always known and upon whom she has always depended to early onset Parkinson's disease and mental illness, she asks herself: "e;How do you deal with the grief of losing someone who is still living?"e; The caregiving of a child to her parent is further compounded by anxiety and depression, as well as the pain of a miscarriage and the struggle to conceive once more. Her journey comes full circle when the speaker gives birth to a son and discovers the gap between the myths of motherhood and a far more nuanced reality.
The Complete Writings of Art Smith, the Bird Boy of Fort Wayne, Edited by Michael Martone is a Midwestern mythology that celebrates facts, fiction, and the impermanence of art. Inspired by the real-life pioneer of early aviation who invented the art of skywriting, the brief stories in this collection by "e;editor"e; Michael Martone follow the adventures of Art Smith and his authorship in the sky. In the spirit of Kurt Vonnegut and Hayao Miyazaki, The Complete Writings of Art Smith, the Bird Boy of Fort Wayne, Edited by Michael Martone recreates the wonder of the early flying machines as it reimagines the unwritten stories we tell about the daredevils who flew them.
A fastidious pet robot with a knack for knitting. A soporific giant pitching camp in the middle of a city. A mysterious mime whose upcoming performance has the whole town on edge. The stories in Mark Polanzak's BOA Short Fiction Prize-winning The OK End of Funny Town stitch fantastic situations into the drab fabric of everyday life. Polanzak delights in stretching every boundary he encounters, from the new focus on practical learning at the New Community School, to the ever-changing tastes of diners in search of the next big trend in local cuisine. Wondrous yet familiar, The OK End of Funny Town excavates the layers between our collective obsession with passing fads and our secret yearning for lasting connection.
Rick Bursky's latest poetry collection reaches into the peculiarities of human relationships with emotional accuracy, charm, and a touch of surrealism. In poems that channel memories of brief encounters and long-lost loves through imagination and half-recalled dreams, Let's Become a Ghost Story turns nostalgia inside-out to reveal the innate humor of our most intimate connections.
In Brand New Spacesuit, John Gallaher writes with honesty, humor, and tenderness about caring for his aging parents. These poems offer snapshots of the poet's memories of his adoption and childhood, his father's heart attacks, his mother's progressing Alzheimer's disease and stroke, raising his own children, and his reflections on the complex mysteries of the universe within everyday moments. With exquisite attention to detail, Gallaher captures the losses, anxieties, and possibilities that come with caring for one another.
In this fiercely feminist ecopoetic collection, Kathryn Nuernberger reclaims love and resilience in an age of cruelty.As the speaker-an artist and intellectual-finds herself living through a rocky marriage in conservative rural Missouri, she maintains her sense of identity by studying the science and folklore of plants historically used for birth control. Her ethnobotanical portraits of common herbs like Queen Anne's lace and pennyroyal are interwoven with lyric biographies of pioneering women ecologists whose stories have been left untold in textbooks.With equal parts righteous fury and tender wisdom, Rue reassesses the past and recontextualizes the present to tell a story about breaking down, breaking through, and breaking into an honest, authentic expression of self.
Selected by Patricia Smith as winner of the 2018 A. Poulin, Jr. Poetry Prize, Matt Morton's debut poetry collection Improvisation Without Accompaniment embraces uncertainty with a spirit of joyous playfulness. These lyric poems follow the rhythms of life for a young man growing up in a small Texas town. As the speaker wrestles with ruptures within the nuclear family and the loss of his religious beliefs, he journeys toward a deeper self-awareness and discovers a fuller palette of experiences. Over the course of this collection, the changing seasons of small-town Texas life give way to surprise encounters in distant cities. The speaker's awareness of mortality grows even as he improvises an affirming response to life's toughest questions.Poignant, searching, and earnestly philosophical, Improvisation Without Accompaniment reaches for meaning within life's joys and griefs.
In the tradition of women as the unsung keepers of history, Deborah Paredez's second poetry collection tells her story as a Latina daughter of the Vietnam War.The title refers to the year 1970-the "e;year of the Metal Dog"e; in the lunar calendar-which was the year of the author's birth, the year of her father's deployment to Vietnam with a troop of Mexican-American immigrant soldiers, and a year of tremendous upheaval across the United States. Images from iconic photographs and her father's snapshots are incorporated, fragmented, scrutinized, and reconstructed throughout the collection as Paredez recalls untold stories from a war that changed her family and the nation.In poems and lamentations that evoke Hecuba, the mythic figure so consumed by grief over the atrocities of war that she was transformed into a howling dog, and La Llorona, the weeping woman in Mexican folklore who haunts the riverbanks in mourning and threatens to disturb the complicity of those living in the present, Paredez recontextualizes the historical moments of the Vietnam era, from the arrest of Angela Davis to the haunting image of Mary Ann Vecchio at the Kent State Massacre, never forgetting the outcry and outrage that women's voices have carried across time.
"e;A moving testament to the impact one person can have and the devastating effects of occupation."e; -Washington Post Best Poetry Books of 2019Internationally beloved poet Naomi Shihab Nye places her Palestinian American identity center stage in her latest full-length poetry collection for adults. The collection is inspired by the story of Janna Jihad Ayyad, the "e;Youngest Journalist in Palestine,"e; who at age 7 began capturing videos of anti-occupation protests using her mother's smartphone. Nye draws upon her own family's roots in a West Bank village near Janna's hometown to offer empathy and insight to the young girl's reporting. Long an advocate for peaceful communication across all boundaries, Nye's poems in The Tiny Journalist put a human face on war and the violence that divides us from each other.
In Laura Read's second poetry collection, the former poet laureate of Spokane, WA, weaves past and present together to create a portrait of a life in progress. As the speaker looks back on her life, she exists simultaneously as all the selves she has ever been: a lost child, a lonely adolescent, a teacher, a daughter, a friend, a wife, a mother-a woman continually shaped and reshaped by memory and experience. Deeply rooted in a particular time and place, Read's poems strip away the illusion of the passage of time as they reveal how we are all wearing "e;dresses from the old country."e;
Hugh Martin's second full-length poetry collection moves within and among history to broaden and complicate our understanding of war. These poems push beyond tidy generalizations and easy moralizing as they explore the complex, often tense relationships between U.S. soldiers and Iraqi civilians. The speaker journeys through training to deployment and back again, returning home to reflect on the soldiers and civilians-both memories and ghosts-left behind. Filled with recollected dialogue and true-to-life encounters, these poems question, deconstruct, examine, and reintegrate the myths and realities of service.
Matthew Volmer fuses the insight of extended meditation with the immediacy of social media in his new collection Permanent Exhibit. These collage-style essays experiment with stream-of-conscious musings as Vollmer opens a browser window into his own mind: letting his thoughts wander through a fast-forward montage of flying snakes, mass shootings, emojis, pop stars, stargazing, ghosts, circuses, and a hundred other things. Full of keen observations and unexpected insights, Permanent Exhibit reclaims the art of letting one's mind wander in the age of the status update.
Winner of the 2018 National Jewish Book Award for PoetryErika Meitner's fifth collection of poetry plumbs human resilience and grit in the face of disaster, loss, and uncertainty. These narrative poems take readers into the heart of southern Appalachia-its highways and strip malls and gun culture, its fragility and danger-as the speaker wrestles with what it means to be the only Jewish family in an Evangelical neighborhood and the anxieties of raising one white son and one black son amidst racial tensions and school lockdown drills. With a firm hand on the pulse of the uncertainty at the heart of 21st century America and a refusal to settle for easy answers, Meitner's poems embrace life in an increasingly fractured society and never stop asking what it means to love our neighbor as ourselves.
In his fifth collection of poems, Christopher Kennedy sifts through the detritus of the past to uncover the memories, images, and symbols that shape an individual's consciousness. Looking to animals and their instincts for inspiration, drawing shape from the poet's Irish Catholic working-class roots, these prose poems transcend grief and depression by seeking humanity's place in the natural world.