"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

Posts tagged ‘Monday Must Read’

Monday Must Read! States of Mercy, A Novel by Ace Boggess

Ace Boggess is author of the novel A Song Without a Melody and four books of poetry: I Have Lost the Art of Dreaming It So, Ultra Deep Field, The Prisoners, and The Beautiful Girl Whose Wish Was Not Fulfilled. He earned degrees from Marshall University and the West Virginia University College of Law. His fiction appears in Notre Dame Review, Lumina, Belmont Story Review, Superstition Review, and other journals. He received a fellowship for fiction from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts and spent five years in a West Virginia prison. He lives in Charleston, West Virginia.

Buy States of Mercy Here! 

States of Mercy Boggess

Mercy Adams, the young existential heroine, follows a path of self-discovery through chaos at the turn of the millennium and beyond. Her friend Lucian Lang narrates the story of her struggle to overcome hurt in a world in transition. Violence, drug abuse, and a growing diversity of approaches to spirituality are the norm, setting up barriers to understanding and, ultimately, transformation. States of Mercy explores questions of identity and belief, but also friendship. How far can friends travel this road together before one goes where the other cannot follow? Mercy and Lucian intend to find out together, unless the mad world destroys them first.

 

Monday Must Read! The Storytelling Animal by Jonathan Gottschall

A must-read for any writer or storyteller, I think. 

Buy It Here! 

storytelling

A New York Times Editor’s Choice
 
A Los Angeles Times Book Prizes Finalist
“A jaunty, insightful new book . . . [that] draws from disparate corners of history and science to celebrate our compulsion to storify everything around us.”
New York Times

Humans live in landscapes of make-believe. We spin fantasies. We devour novels, films, and plays. Even sporting events and criminal trials unfold as narratives. Yet the world of story has long remained an undiscovered and unmapped country. Now Jonathan Gottschall offers the first unified theory of storytelling. He argues that stories help us navigate life’s complex social problems–just as flight simulators prepare pilots for difficult situations. Storytelling has evolved, like other behaviors, to ensure our survival. Drawing on the latest research in neuroscience, psychology, and evolutionary biology, Gottschall tells us what it means to be a storytelling animal and explains how stories can change the world for the better. We know we are master shapers of story. The Storytelling Animal finally reveals how stories shape us.

“This is a quite wonderful book. It grips the reader with both stories and stories about the telling of stories, then pulls it all together to explain why storytelling is a fundamental human instinct.”
–Edward O. Wilson

“Charms with anecdotes and examples . . . we have not left nor should we ever leave Neverland.”–Cleveland Plain Dealer

Monday Must Read! Before Language by Susan Deer Cloud

Love this book! 

Buy Before Language Here! 

before language deer cloud

Susan Deer Cloud, a mixed lineage Catskill Indian, is an alumna of Goddard College (MFA) and Binghamton University (B.A. and M.A.). She has taught Creative Writing, Rhetoric and Literature at Binghamton University and Broome Community College. A few years ago she returned to her “heart country” Catskills to dwell once more with foxes, deer, black bears, bald eagles, and the ghosts of panthers and ancestors. She now lives as a full-time mountain woman, dreamer and writer. Deer Cloud is the recipient of various awards and fellowships, including an Elizabeth George Foundation Grant, a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship, two New York State Foundation for the Arts Fellowships, and a Chenango County Council for the Arts Individual Artist’s Grant. Some of her books are Hunger Moon (Shabda Press); Fox Mountain, The Last Ceremony and Car Stealer (FootHills Publishing); and Braiding Starlight (Split Oak Press). Her poems, stories and essays have been published in anthologies and journals too numerous to name. In order to get out “the voices of the voiceless,” the poet has edited three published anthologies: multicultural Confluence and Native American anthologies I Was Indian (Before Being Indian Was Cool), Volumes I & II; the 2008 Spring Issue of Yellow Medicine Review, a Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art & Thought; and the Re-Matriation Chapbook Series of Indigenous Poetry. She is a member of the international peace organization SERVAS; Poets & Writers; Associated Writing Programs (AWP); and indigenous Wordcraft Circle. She has served on panels at writers’ conferences and given myriad poetry readings at colleges, cultural centers, coffee houses, and other venues. In between her sojourns in the Catskills, Deer Cloud has spent the past few years roving with her life’s companion, John Gunther, around Turtle Island (North America) as well as on the Isles (Iceland, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England) and Europe

Monday Must Read! Leopard Lady: A Life in Verse by Valerie Nieman

Love this book! 

Buy Leopard Lady Here from Press 53

Leopard+Lady Nieman

You have not before read a book like this one. This one will take you where you have never been. Yes, you may have seen a circus but that is not exactly what is here. Nor have you met these people before. Unique, deeply moving, funny, and withal composed on the edge of danger and enlightenment, Leopard Lady is masterful. Nieman’s syntax, rhymes, meter and scenes make music while the reader is charged with an energy that takes us closer and closer to the singular truth we must bear.

—Kelly Cherry, former Poet Laureate of Virginia

Here, readers are taken on an unexpected adventure. In “Destroyed by Fire Flood and Ice,” the Gypsy Queen asks, “Do you dare see the secrets past the veil?” Readers, be ready to find what you did not know you were seeking, as the Leopard Lady will take you on an unforeseen journey and, indeed, you will discover secrets as you travel these wondrous paths.

—Jill Gerard, Editor, Chautauqua

Monday Must Read! Paradise Drive by Rebecca Foust

Rebecca Foust won the 2015 Press 53 Award for Poetry for Paradise Drive. Her other books include God, Seed: Poetry & Art About the Natural World (Tebot Bach, 2010), a collaboration with artist Lorna Stevens that received a 2010 Foreword Book of the Year Award; All That Gorgeous Pitiless Song (Many Mountains Moving, 2010), which received the 2008 MMM Press Poetry Book Prize; and two chapbooks, Mom’s Canoe (Texas Review Press, 2009), and Dark Card (Texas Review Press, 2008), both winners of the Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook prize. Foust earned an MFA from Warren Wilson College in 2010 and is the recipient of fellowships from The Frost Place and The MacDowell Colony. Her poems have appeared widely in journals including The Hudson ReviewThe Massachusetts ReviewNarrativeNorth American Review, and Sewanee Review, and her prose is in American Book Review, Chautauqua, Poetry Flash, The Rumpus, Tikkun Daily, and other journals. Her essay, “Venn Diagram,” won the Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction Prize from The Malahat Review in 2014. Foust lives and works in the San Francisco Bay Area as a writer, freelance editor, teacher, and Marin Poetry Center board member.

Purchase Paradise Drive here! 

Learn more about Rebecca here!

foust

Praise for Paradise Drive 

“There is great music in these poems, and sonnet after sonnet is masterful. Not since Berryman’s Henry have I been so engaged by a persona: Pilgrim, who ‘like most of we’ is good and bad, hapless sometimes, other times approaching wisdom, always sending deeper and deeper her primary roots.” — Thomas Lux

“In Rebecca Foust’s splendid book-length sonnet sequence, Paradise Drive, we come upon a Pilgrim contemplating the deadly sins while hiding out in the bathrooms at some of Marin County, California’s swankiest parties. Foust drives her Keatsian sensibility straight into the 21st century of terrorism and autism, divorce and yoga, soldiers and syringes, booze and valet parking, determined to prove that truth makes beauty.” — Molly Peacock

“Foust does it: she reinvents the sonnet form, making it a unit of expression again, not a museum piece sitting on its plinth, forlornly wishing we’d quit paying homage to it. She strews the individual poems with savagely sparkling jewels of satire, insight, and wit. This is a masterful book, yes, and also a great deal of fun to read.” — James Cummins

Monday Must Read! Callings, edited by Dave Isay

At a time when we need inspiration and belief in the power of one person more than ever, this collection is definitely a must-read.

callings

Stories of passion, courage, and commitment, following individuals as they pursue the work they were born to do, from StoryCorps founder Dave Isay

Buy it here! 

In Callings, StoryCorps founder Dave Isay presents unforgettable stories from people doing what they love. Some found their paths at a very young age, others later in life; some overcame great odds or upturned their lives in order to pursue what matters to them. Many of their stories have never been broadcast or published by StoryCorps until now.

We meet a man from the barrios of Texas whose harrowing experiences in a family of migrant farmers inspired him to become a public defender. We meet a longtime waitress who takes pride in making regulars and newcomers alike feel at home in her Nashville diner. We meet a young man on the South Side of Chicago who became a teacher in order to help at-risk teenagers like the ones who killed his father get on the right track. We meet a woman from Little Rock who helps former inmates gain the skills and confidence they need to rejoin the workforce. Together they demonstrate how work can be about much more than just making a living, that chasing dreams and finding inspiration in unexpected places can transform a vocation into a calling. Their shared sense of passion, honor, and commitment brings deeper meaning and satisfaction to every aspect of their lives. 

An essential contribution to the beloved StoryCorps collection, Callings is an inspiring tribute to rewarding work and the American pursuit of happiness.

Monday Must Read! Ragged Eden by Michael Meyerhofer

Michael Meyerhofer‘s fifth book of poems, Ragged Eden, is available from Glass Lyre Press. He has been the recipient of the James Wright Poetry Award, the Liam Rector First Book Award, the Brick Road Poetry Book Prize, and other honors. For more information and an embarrassing childhood photo, visit troublewithhammers.com.

Purchase Ragged Eden here!

Ragged Eden

“In these brilliant poems, Michael Meyerhofer explores the complex and crazy world you and I wake up to every day. He writes about superheroes and poverty and death and Carl Jung and parallel universes and dictators and what you can see and hear while sitting in a bar where they’re mourning a dead woman named Lynette. And what makes all of these things jump up and shout is Meyerhofer’s love and curiosity. He’s the poet who wants his eyeballs to always be open, always take in and hug the things most of us are too busy looking for the next Starbucks to see.”John Guzlowski, author of Echoes of Tattered Tongues

Michael’s also a fabulous fantasy novelist! His first fantasy novel, Wytchfire (Book I in the Dragonkin Trilogy) was published by Red Adept Publishing. The book went on to win the Whirling Prize from the Kellogg Writers Series, and was nominated for a 2015 Readers’ Choice Award in fantasy by the premier book review website, Big Al’s Books & Pals, and was also an Honorable Mention for the Readers’ Favorite Award. The sequels, Knightswrath and Kingsteel, are out now and the entire trilogy is also available in audio format and omnibus. There’s also a second series, the Godsfall Trilogy, set in the same world. The third volume, The Undergod, is available now!

Find his fantasy novels here!

 

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