"This work is unlike any other, in its range of rich, conjuring imagery and its dexterity, its smart voice. Carroll-Hackett doesn’t spare us—but doesn’t save us—she draws a blueprint of power and class with her unflinching pivot: matter-of-fact and tender." —Jan Beatty

Archive for the ‘Must Read Monday’ Category

Monday Must Read! Undoing the Silence

LOVE this book. 

Undoing the Silence offers guidance to help both citizens and professionals influence democratic process through letters, articles, reports and public testimony.
Undoing the Silence
Louise Dunlap, PhD, began her career as an activist writing instructor during the Free Speech Movement of the 1960s. She learned that listening and gaining a feel for audience are just as important to social transformation as the outspoken words of student leaders atop police cars. “Free speech is a first step, but real communication matches speech with listening and understanding. That is when thinking shifts and change happens.” Dunlap felt compelled to go where the silences were deepest because her work aimed not just at teaching but also at healing both individual voices and an ailing collective voice. Her tales of those adventures and what she knows about the culture of silence — how gender, race, education, class, and family work to quiet dissent — are interwoven with practical methods for people to put their most challenging ideas into words. Louise Dunlap gives writing workshops around the country for universities and social justice, environmental, and peace organizations that help reluctant writers get past their internal censors to find their powerful voice. Her insight strengthens strategic thinking and her “You can do it!” approach makes social-action writing achievable for everyone.

Monday Must Read! Haunted City by Julie Brooks Barbour

Julie Brooks Barbour is the author of two full-length collections, Haunted City (2017) and Small Chimes(2014), both from Kelsay Books, and three chapbooks, including Beautifully Whole (Hermeneutic Chaos Press, 2015) and Earth Lust (Finishing Line Press, 2014). Her poems have recently appeared in South Dakota Review, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Whale Road Review, and The Indianapolis Review. She is co-editor of Border Crossing and Poetry Editor at Connotation Press: An Online Artifact. She teaches writing at Lake Superior State University and is a Guest Artist Mentor for Wilson College’s MFA Program.

Purchase Haunted City here! 

Visit Julie’s website here! 

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Praise for Haunted City! 

Julie Brooks Barbour’s exciting new book, Haunted City, occupies the edge between poetry and fable, dream and nightmare. These vivid prose poems, themselves between genres, construct a terrifying metropolis of desire. -Stuart Dischell, author of Backwards Days and Dig Safe 

This book of prose poems, or perhaps it is a short novel with poetic lines backlit by lightning, is mysterious and involving, indeed haunting. Barbour is a true poet with a muse at her side. As she explains, what she has created is “really what someone else created when I relinquished control.”-Kelly Cherry, author of The Life and Death of Poetry: Poems

Presented in brief glimpses of lyric prose, an extended sequence of image-driven evocations, Barbour gives us experimental writing at its very best, offering innovations in form and technique that are thought-provoking as they are charged with affect and suspense.  This is an accomplished book by a truly remarkable writer.  -Kristina Marie Darling, author of Scorched Altar:  Selected Poems & Stories 2007-2014

 

Happy Reading!

Monday Must Read! Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-Memoirs by Beth Ann Fennelly

Beth Ann Fennelly, Poet Laureate of Mississippi, teaches in the MFA Program at the University of Mississippi, where she was named Outstanding Teacher of the Year. She’s won grants and awards from the N.E.A., the United States Artists, a Pushcart, and a Fulbright to Brazil. Beth Ann has published six books–three of poetry: Open HouseTender Hooks, and Unmentionables, all with W. W. Norton. Beth Ann’s poetry has been in over fifty anthologies, including Best American Poetry 1996, 2005, and 2006, The Book of Irish American Poetry from the Eighteenth Century to the Present, Poets of the New Century, and The Penguin Book of the Sonnet, and in textbooks such as Contemporary American Poetry and Literature.

In recent years, Beth Ann’s written more prose. A book of essays, Great With Child: Letters to a Young Mother, was published by Norton in 2006. In 2013, Beth Ann and her husband, Tom Franklin, co-authored a novel, The Tilted World, published by HarperCollins and set during the 1927 flood of the Mississippi River.  Her sixth book, Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-memoirs, recently published by W. W. Norton, was named an Atlanta Journal Constitution Best Book of 2017 and a Goodreaders Favorite for 2017.

Visit Beth Ann’s website here

Buy Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-memoirs here

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About Heating & Cooling

The 52 micro-memoirs in genre-defying Heating & Cooling offer bright glimpses into a richly lived life, combining the compression of poetry with the truth-telling of nonfiction into one heartfelt, celebratory book. Ranging from childhood recollections to quirky cultural observations, these micro-memoirs build on one another to arrive at a portrait of Beth Ann Fennelly as a wife, mother, writer, and deeply original observer of life’s challenges and joys. Some pieces are wistful, some wry, and many reveal the humor buried in our everyday interactions. Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-Memoirs shapes a life from unexpectedly illuminating moments, and awakens us to these moments as they appear in the margins of our lives.

Monday Must Read! Crone by Clare L. Martin

Clare L. Martin’s Seek the Holy Dark was selected as the 2017 Louisiana Series of Cajun and Creole Poetry by Yellow Flag Press. Her debut, Eating the Heart First, was published in 2012 by Press 53. Martin founded and edits the poetry magazine, MockingHeart Review. She lives in Louisiana with her husband and daughter.

Visit Clare’s website 

Read excerpts and purchase this beautiful book here from NixesMate

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Praise for Crone

“Clare Martin’s Crone is a feast for eyes and ears, seductive in its use of both imagery and sound. Celebrating the sometimes terrifying, sometimes life-giving teachings of the wise woman,  Crone evokes a woman’s coming-to-power, an epic “cronesong” of spells and potions in the form of poetry.”
–Sheryl St.Germain, author of The Small Door of Your Death.
Clare Martin’s Crone glows equal parts magic, music, and muscle. Her lines are laced with ambergris and jasmine, ghosts and wolfbreath. I would call Martin’s art a gorgeous dream, but that would ignore the blood, bone, and heart that drive this book at its core. Crone is the creation of a poet at the height of her powers, in full voice, and mesmerizing. Immerse yourselves in these lines, friends. You’ll rise from their waters cleansed and awed.  —Jack B. Bedell, author of No Brother, This Storm, Poet Laureate, State of Louisiana, 2017-2019
“Clare L. Martin is a mysterious spellcaster. CRONE is a lush and dizzying monster of a poem. Coming through it made me see the world anew.”
Luis Alberto Urrea, author of House of Broken Angels

Monday Must Read! Bad Indians by Deborah Miranda

Buy this amazing memoir here

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“This beautiful and devastating book—part tribal history, part lyric and intimate memoir—should be required reading for anyone seeking to learn about California Indian history, past and present. Deborah A. Miranda tells stories of her Ohlone Costanoan Esselen family as well as the experience of California Indians as a whole through oral histories, newspaper clippings, anthropological recordings, personal reflections, and poems. The result is a work of literary art that is wise, angry, and playful all at once, a compilation that will break your heart and teach you to see the world anew.”

An enrolled member of the Ohlone-Costanoan Esselen Nation of California, poet Deborah Miranda was born in Los Angeles to an Esselen/Chumash father and a mother of French ancestry. She grew up in Washington State, earning a BS in teaching moderate special-needs children from Wheelock College in 1983 and an MA and PhD in English from the University of Washington. Miranda’s collections of poetry include Raised by Humans (2015); Indian Cartography: Poems (1999), winner of the Diane Decorah Memorial First Book Award from the Native Writers’ Circle of the Americas; and The Zen of La Llorona (2005), nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. Miranda also received the 2000 Writer of the Year Award for Poetry from the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers. Her mixed-genre collection Bad Indians: A Tribal Memoir (2013) won a Gold Medal from the Independent Publisher’s Association and the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Literary Award, and was shortlisted for the William Saroyan Award.

Praise for Bad Indians

”Essential for all of us who were taught in school that the ‘Mission Indians’ no longer existed in California, Bad Indianscombines tribal and family histories, tape recordings, and the writings of a white ethnologist who spoke with Miranda’s family, together with photographs, old reports from the mission priests to their bishops, and newspaper articles concerning Indians from the nearby white settlements. Miranda takes us on a journey to locate herself by way of the stories of her ancestors and others who come alive through her writing. It’s such a fine book that a few words can’t do it justice.”
–Leslie Marmon Silko, author of Ceremony and The Turquoise Ledge

Bad Indiansbrings the human story of California’s indigenous community sharply into focus. It’s a narrative long obscured and distorted by celebrations of Christian missionaries and phony stories about civilization coming to a golden land. No other history of California’s indigenous communities that I know of presents such a moving, personal account of loss and survival.”
–Frederick E. Hoxie, Swanlund Professor, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

”For so long, Native writers and readers have opened books of our tribal history, archaeology, or anthropology and found that it is not the story we know. It does not include the people we know. It does not tell the stories of the heart or the relationships that were, and are, significant in any time. When we write our own books, they do not fit the ‘record,’ as created by and confirmed by outside views. From the voice of the silenced, the written about and not written by, this book is groundbreaking not only as literature but as history.”
–Linda Hogan, author of Rounding the Human Corners and a faculty member for the Indigenous Education Institute

Also check out Ms. Miranda’s collection of poetry, Raised by Humans. 

Happy reading! 

 

Monday Must Read! The Rope Swing by Jonathan Corcoran

Jonathan Corcoran is the author of the story collection, The Rope Swing, published in 2016 by West Virginia University Press. The Rope Swing was a finalist for the 2017 Lambda Literary Awards and long-listed for The Story Prize. His stories have been anthologized in Eyes Glowing at the Edge of the Woods: Fiction and Poetry from West Virginia and Best Gay Stories 2017. He received a BA in Literary Arts from Brown University and an MFA in Fiction Writing from Rutgers University-Newark. Jonathan is currently Visiting Assistant Professor at Wesleyan University and serves as a Visiting Writer in the low-residency MFA program at West Virginia Wesleyan College. He was born and raised in a small town in West Virginia and currently resides in Brooklyn, NY.

Check out Jonathan’s website here! 

Corcoran Must Read

Buy this beautiful book here!

Praise for The Rope Swing

“Jonathan Corcoran’s Appalachian voice, so fierce, so tender,portrays tradition as both weapon and soothing balm. The Rope Swingtakes us inside quiet revolutions of the soul in mountain towns far from Stonewall: we can never go home again, but we recognize ourselves in these linked stories of love, loss, the economic tyranny of neglect and exploitation, and the lifelong alliance between those who stay and those who leave. The Rope Swing establishes a new American writer whose unerring instincts are cause for celebration.”

—Jayne Anne Phillips, author of Quiet DellLark and Termite, and Black Tickets

Monday Must Read! The Crossing Over by Jen Karetnick

 Jen Karetnick is the author of four full-length poetry collections, including The Treasures That Prevail (Whitepoint Press, September 2016), finalist for the 2017 Poetry Society of Virginia Book Prize, and The Burning Where Breath Used to Be (David Robert Books, 2020). The winner of the 2017 Hart Crane Memorial Poetry Contest, the 2016 Romeo Lemay Poetry Prize, and the 2015 Anna Davidson Rosenberg Prize, she is also the author of four other poetry chapbooks, including Bud Break at Mango House, winner of the 2008 Portlandia Prize. Her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Crab Orchard Review, JAMA, Michigan Quarterly Review, The Missouri Review, Ovenbird, Salamander, and Tampa Review. She is co-founder/co-editor of the daily online literary journal, SWWIM Every Day. Jen received an MFA in poetry from University of California, Irvine, and an MFA in fiction from University of Miami. She works as the dining critic for MIAMI Magazine and as a freelance writer and trade book author. Her fourth cookbook, Ice Cube Tray Recipes: 75 Easy and Creative Kitchen Hacks for Freezing, Cooking, and Baking with Ice Cube Trays (Skyhorse Publishing), is forthcoming May 2019.

Find her on Twitter @Kavetchnik or see https://jkaretnick.com.

Purchase this beautiful book here!

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About The Crossing Over

The winner of the 2018 Split Rock Review Chapbook Competition, The Crossing Over is 21 consecutive poems about the migrant experience in the Mediterranean, narrated from the boat’s point of view. It begins with the crafting of the vehicle – the birth of its voice – and ends with its destruction. As much participant as it is victim, the boat is the lens through which the reader sees all that happens to the refugees: smuggling, hunger and thirst, rape, drowning, labor in open international waters, terrorism, organ stealing, deportation, and repatriation – and, for some, survival in a new country.

Poems in The Crossing Over were included or are forthcoming in literary magazines such as Construction, The Evansville Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, One, and Salamander, and have won or been nominated for awards such as ICON’s Hart Crane Memorial Poetry Contest, Brittany Noakes Competition, Locked Horn Press Poetry Prize, Headway Quarterly Writing Contest, and Best of the Net.

Praise for The Crossing Over

About The Crossing Over, poet M.B. McLatchey, author of the prize-winning collection, The Lame God, writes, “This book is our most awaited guide for understanding what it means to be human among humans – or as the poet says, for learning the rites for search and rescue. As she says in ‘Internment’: ‘Before the cleansing of all that is corporeal, the rites for search and rescue.’ And, in order to command this search, Karetnick, like the most masterful of guides and poets, is willing to lead us and to look where most of us cannot. For this book, for this guide, this poet, we are right to be grateful.’”

Award-winning poet Denise Duhamel writes, “Boat as metaphor for what we carry. Boat as vessel (woman), boat as adventure (man and conquest). Boat as witness to abominations that befall immigrants and refugees. Boat lost at sea, “a brief dream the ocean/once had”—as we all are sometimes lost. Boat as death, driven by Charon. Jen Karetnick’s The Crossing Over is a political, moral journey, a tour de force built by sonnets, lists, a ghazal, a concrete poem, a pantoum, and literary magic.”

 

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