Two New Books! Happy Pub Date to Feverland and I Know Your Kind
We are thrilled to announce the publication of two very special books today: Alex Lemon’s Feverland: A Memoir in Shards and William Brewer’s National Poetry Series-winning collection of poems I Know Your Kind.
When Alex recently recorded a short reading of “EKG,” the first essay of Feverland, he described the book as being about trauma, the fallibility of the body, and the joys of being alive. Allow us to say a bit more about that. Feverland touches on illness, addiction, abuse, and disability—but also survival and beauty. Feverland is composed of essays from a writer reckoning with the shadows of his past and trying desperately to heal, to be better, to create a family, to be both shattered and gloriously whole, here and now. “Lemon’s intense and stratified essays lean in and tell us the hardest thing we’ve ever heard, then embrace us so tightly we think we might burst from the sheer joy of being alive,” writes Ada Limón. At its heart, Feverland is a writer’s attempt to muster tenderness for himself so he can live in kindness.
I Know Your Kind is born of that same impulse—to meet pain and stigma with beauty and art—but set at the center of the opioid epidemic in rural Appalacia. Will recently described how, years back, he was approached by a friend who admitted to being a heroin addict. He did not react well. “Within a matter of minutes,” though, “I was overwhelmed with repulsion toward myself for how quickly I slipped into such a damning, limited, and unsophisticated view of what this person had just confessed. Here they were, at their most vulnerable, and I couldn’t be less humane.” And like that, the project of these poems began. “In short, the book came out of a need to understand, communicate, and connect … these poems strive to empathize with those struggling with addiction and to counter our nation’s instinct to stigmatize and punish.” “One of this year’s most important books of verse,” (Plume), I Know Your Kind introduces us to the lost and bereaved, the enabled and the enabler, the addict who knocks late at night and the brother who closes the door. Here, too, is another book full of suffering, ruin, and despair met with unforgettable tenderness and grace.
We hope you will read these books with as much love and admiration as we have.