Tyehimba Jess : Olio

screen-shot-2016-11-16-at-11-13-00-am“This 21st century hymnal of black evolutionary poetry, this almanac, this theatrical melange of miraculous meta-memory. Tyehimba Jess is inventive, prophetic, wondrous. He writes unflinchingly into the historical clefs of blackface, black sound, human sensibility. After the last poem is read we have no idea how long we’ve been on our knees.”–poet Nikky Finney;  “Olio is one of the most inventive, intensive poetic undertakings of the past decade…The result is a work both historical and musical, scholarly and sculptural.”–Boston Globe

 

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Eliot Weinberger : The Ghosts of Birds

screen-shot-2016-11-01-at-10-27-11-pmA new collection from “one of the world’s great essayists” (The New York Times), The Ghosts of Birds offers 35 new essays by Eliot Weinberger.  He chronicles a 19th century journey down the Colorado River, records the dreams of people named Chang, & shares other factually verifiable discoveries that seem too fabulous to possibly be true. These essays include his notorious review of George W. Bush’s memoir, Decision Points, writings about the I Ching,  & the history of American Indophilia (“There is a line, however jagged, from pseudo-Hinduism to Malcolm X”). This collection proves once again that Weinberger is “one of the bravest and sharpest minds in the U.S.” (Javier Marías).

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Brian Blanchfield : Proxies

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 6.59.26 AM“Into what some are calling a new golden age of creative nonfiction lands Brian Blanchfield’s Proxies, which singlehandedly raises the bar for what’s possible in the field. This is a momentous work informed by a lifetime of thinking, reading, loving, and reckoning, utterly matchless in its erudition, its precision, its range, its daring, and its grace. I know of no book like it, nor any recent book as thoroughly good, in art or in heart.” –Maggie Nelson                                                    “Maybe short says it best. Sexy book.”      —Eileen Myles

 

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Idra Novey : Ways to Disappear

Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 6.44.03 AM“Idra Novey, an acclaimed poet & translator of Spanish & Portuguese literature, has written a debut novel that’s a fast-paced, beguilingly playful, noirish literary mystery with a translator at its center. Ways to Disappear explores the meaning behind a writer’s words–the way they can both hide & reveal deep truths….Yes, there’s carnage, but there’s also exuberant love, revelations of long-buried, unhappy secrets, ruminations about what makes a satisfying life, a publisher’s regrets about moral compromises in both his work & his use of his family wealth & connections, & an alternately heartfelt & wry portrait of the satisfactions & anxieties of the generally underappreciated art of translation.”–NPR review

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Ursula K. Le Guin : Late in the Day

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 6.49.33 AMLate in the Day, Ursula K. Le Guin’s new collection of poems (2010–2014) seeks meaning in an ever-connected world, giving voice to objects that may not speak a human language but communicate with us nevertheless through and about the seasonal rhythms of the earth, the minute and the vast, the ordinary and the mythological. As Le Guin herself states, “science explicates, poetry implicates.” Accordingly, this immersive, tender collection implicates us (in the best sense) in a subjectivity of everyday objects and occurrences. “There is no writer with an imagination as forceful and delicate as Ursula K. Le Guin’s.” —Grace Paley

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David Biespiel : A Long High Whistle

Screen shot 2015-08-19 at 7.05.53 AMLibrary Journal calls David Biespiel’s A Long High Whistle one of the best books about reading poetry you will ever find. Biespiel is a poet, editor, essayist, critic and teacher, and also the writer of the longest running newspaper column on poetry in the U.S.  A Long High Whistle discusses the work of nearly a hundred poets from ancient times to the present, in English and in translation. This collection will provide anyone, from the beginning poet to the mature writer to the lover of literature, with insights into what inspires poets, how poems are written and read, and how poetry situates itself in American life.

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Maggie Nelson : The Argonauts

Screen shot 2015-07-29 at 9.12.54 AMAn intrepid voyage out to the frontiers of the latest thinking about love, language, and family. Maggie Nelson binds her personal experience, the story of her relationship with the fluidly-gendered artist Harry Dodge, to a rigorous exploration of what iconic theorists have said about sexuality, gender, and the vexed institutions of marriage and child-rearing. The Argonauts is a genre-bending memoir offering fresh, fierce, and timely thinking about desire, identity, and the limitations and possibilities of love and language, offering a firsthand account of the complexities and joys of (queer) family-making.

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