David Biespiel : The Education of a Young Poet

“Biespiel’s supple memoir of becoming a poet will surely inspire other writers to embrace the bodily character of writing & feel the power &, sometimes, the emptiness of the act of writing poetry.” ―Publishers Weekly (starred review) “Whether he is writing about poetry, politics, competitive diving, or the glories of great conversation, Biespiel’s recurring subject is the tension between freedom & discipline―between the sublime release of our own wildness & the precision that comes only from exquisite self-control. Part memoir, part ars poetica, The Education of a Young Poet is a feast: of language, of memory, & of insights into how one young writer came into his own.” ―Patrick Phillips

Eileen Myles : Afterglow

“What is a dog if not god? In Afterglow, Eileen Myles steps up to the challenge for writers to function as prophets. Ghostwritten in part by deceased pit bull Rosie, this ‘dog memoir’ explores—among other things—geometry, gender, mortality, evil, aging, and plaids. Myles makes new rules for what prose writing can be. Afterglow is Myles’s funniest, profoundest work yet.” —Chris Kraus, author of I Love Dick and After Kathy Acker;  “Only Eileen Myles could reinvent the memoir again so stunningly; Afterglow is the sort of multidimensional love story you could only expect from one of our greatest experimental writers living today!” —Porochista Khakpour, author of The Last Illusion and Sick: A Memoir

Matthew Zapruder : Why Poetry

In Why Poetry,  award-winning poet, translator and editor, Matthew Zapruder argues that the way we have been taught to read poetry is the very thing that prevents us from enjoying it. Anchored in poetic analysis & steered by Zapruder’s personal experience of coming to the form, Why Poetry is engaging & conversational, even as it makes a passionate argument for the necessity of poetry in an age when information is constantly being mistaken for knowledge. He takes on what it is that poetry—and poetry alone—can do. Most important, he asks how reading poetry can help us to lead our lives with greater meaning and purpose.

Yanara Friedland : Uncountry

“As a descendent of Chantal Akerman and Unica Zürn—among others—Yanara Friedland reimagines the origin myth. Friedland’s permeable pages allow the reader entryway into a “mirror [that] becomes an open door,” a door through which we hear the echo of Ana Mendieta telling us “There is no original past to redeem: there is the void.” Uncountry is an invitation to that void, and Friedland serves as dream guide through this blend of the personal, political, and stunningly poetic”–Lily Hoang;  Uncountry: a Mythology is winner of the Noemi Press Fiction Prize

Mary Ruefle : My Private Property

“Mary Ruefle’s careful, measured sentences sound as if they were written by a thousand-year-old person who is still genuinely curious about the world… She combines imagistic techniques from surrealism with narrative techniques to create surprising, high-velocity, and deeply affecting work.”–The Stranger; “Mary Ruefle is, in this humble bookseller’s opinion, the best prose-writing poet in America. (And one of our best poets, too.) My Private Property, her latest collection of stories, essays, and asides, is as joyous and singular a book as you’ll read…”–Stephen Sparks, Literary Hub

Dani Shapiro : Hourglass

What are the forces that shape our most elemental bonds? How do we make lifelong commitments in the face of identities that are continuously shifting, and commit ourselves when the self is so often in flux? What happens to love in the face of the unexpected, in the face of disappointment and compromise–how do we wrest beauty from imperfection, find grace in the ordinary, desire what we have rather than what we lack? Drawing on literature, poetry, philosophy, and theology, Shapiro writes gloriously of the joys and challenges of matrimonial life, in a luminous narrative that unfurls with urgent immediacy and sharp intelligence.

Thalia Field : Experimental Animals

“Thalia Field has now composed what very well might be her life’s work–a tragic, comical, & utterly fascinating tale of a marriage that vividly encapsulates not only the origins of experimental medicine, but an entire age that spirited experiments in literature, science, engineering, film, etc. It’s nothing less than a history–gorgeously fictional, purposefully essayistic–of how we got where we are.” -John D’Agata; “Stemming from a through-line of marital discord in the household of the great French vivisector Claude Bernard…this compelling tale is made up largely of excerpts and quotations…a beautiful and thought-provoking collage of…rescued history & a sobering tribute to some of its victims.” —Karen Joy Fowler