It’s September 1951, in Dalton, North Dakota: years since George and Margaret’s widowed daughter-in-law left with their only grandson and married another man. Margaret is resolved to bring little Jimmy home—but when she and George find him in Montana, they learn his new family is equally determined not to give up the boy without a fight.
A handful of blackberries offered from bloodied arms, bee stings likened to pulses of sunlight, a honeycomb of marrow exposed. This National Poetry Series winner pulls shards of tenderness—and a transformative, regenerative force—from a world where violence and terror infuse the body, a world on the verge of collapse.
Heian-period Japanese women writers, science fiction, and the author’s own experience as a second-generation immigrant: these are some of the sources these poems use to explore the connection between identity and language. Wonderfully lyrical and strikingly acute, this collection is an essential contribution to contemporary Asian American literature.
What does the disappearance of animals mean for human imagination? With a mixture of humor, reverence, and curiosity, this book paints a vivid portrait of the world that made us, and the wisdom we are losing as so many of its creatures fade away.
Modeled after the character sketches of Theophrastus, these stories deftly introduce a series of oddly recognizable individuals. In these brief interactions—moving from a nightly Sad Hour hosted by a bar to the moonlit sandbox of a retired army general—we see not just the richness of these characters but ourselves.
A woozy logic dominates these poems: a heart can become a buzzing hive of bees, a rooster can trigger a series of bombs, a young man can embrace a city bus as his spirit animal. The winner of the 2014 Lindquist & Vennum Prize for Poetry is a consistently slippery, enrapturing collection.
Ngo Tu Lap has published three collections of poems in Vietnam, as well as five works of fiction, five collections of essays, and many translations from Russian, French, and English. Black Stars, co-translated by Martha Collins, is the first full collection of his work in English and received the PEN Poetry in Translation Award.
Joanna Higgins is the author of Waiting for the Queen: A Novel of Early America, a novel for young readers, as well as A Soldier's Book, Dead Center, and The Importance of High Places, a collection of short stories.
Ed Pavlić is the author of Visiting Hours at the Coloring Line, winner of the 2013 National Poetry Series, and several other collections of poems and critical works. He has published essays, poems, fiction, and dramatic pieces in numerous magazines and journals and teaches English at the University of Georgia.