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Memorial Drive by Natasha Trethewey
'A must-read classic' Mary Karr 'Trethewey writes elegantly, trenchantly, intimately as well about the fraught history of the south and what it means live at the intersection of America's struggle between blackness and whiteness. And what, in our troubled republic, is a subject more evergreen?' Mitchell S. Jackson Natasha Trethewey was born in Mississippi in the 60s to a black mother and a white father. When she was six, Natasha's parents divorced, and she and her mother moved to Atlanta. There, her mother met the man who would become her second husband, and Natasha's stepfather. While she was still a child, Natasha decided that she would not tell her mother about what her stepfather did when she was not there: the quiet bullying and control, the games of cat and mouse. Her mother kept her own secrets, secrets that grew harder to hide as Natasha came of age. When Natasha was nineteen and away at college, her stepfather shot her mother dead on the driveway outside their home. With penetrating insight and a searing voice that moves from the wrenching to the elegiac, Memorial Drive is a compelling and searching look at a shared human experience of sudden loss and absence, and a piercing glimpse at the enduring ripple effects of white racism and domestic abuse. Luminous, urgent, and visceral, it cements Trethewey's position as one of the most important voices in America today.
Memorial Drive by Willie Abraham Howard
The Legacy Of A Sow S Ear by Ivars Avots
The Carrying by Ada Limón
From National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist Ada Limón comes The Carrying—her most powerful collection yet. Vulnerable, tender, acute, these are serious poems, brave poems, exploring with honesty the ambiguous moment between the rapture of youth and the grace of acceptance. A daughter tends to aging parents. A woman struggles with infertility—“What if, instead of carrying / a child, I am supposed to carry grief?”—and a body seized by pain and vertigo as well as ecstasy. A nation convulses: “Every song of this country / has an unsung third stanza, something brutal.” And still Limón shows us, as ever, the persistence of hunger, love, and joy, the dizzying fullness of our too-short lives. “Fine then, / I’ll take it,” she writes. “I’ll take it all.” In Bright Dead Things, Limón showed us a heart “giant with power, heavy with blood”—“the huge beating genius machine / that thinks, no, it knows, / it’s going to come in first.” In her follow-up collection, that heart is on full display—even as The Carrying continues further and deeper into the bloodstream, following the hard-won truth of what it means to live in an imperfect world.
Native Guard Enhanced Audio Edition by Natasha Trethewey
Included in this audio-enhanced edition are recordings of the U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey reading Native Guard in its entirety, as well as an interview with the poet from the HMH podcast The Poetic Voice, in which she recounts what it was like to grow up in the South as the daughter of a white father and a black mother and describes other influences that inspired the work. Experience this Pulitzer Prize–winning collection in an engaging new way. Growing up in the Deep South, Natasha Trethewey was never told that in her hometown of Gulfport, Mississippi, black soldiers had played a pivotal role in the Civil War. Off the coast, on Ship Island, stood a fort that had once been a Union prison housing Confederate captives. Protecting the fort was the second regiment of the Louisiana Native Guards -- one of the Union's first official black units. Trethewey's new book of poems pays homage to the soldiers who served and whose voices have echoed through her own life. The title poem imagines the life of a former slave stationed at the fort, who is charged with writing letters home for the illiterate or invalid POWs and his fellow soldiers. Just as he becomes the guard of Ship Island's memory, so Trethewey recalls her own childhood as the daughter of a black woman and a white man. Her parents' marriage was still illegal in 1966 Mississippi. The racial legacy of the Civil War echoes through elegiac poems that honor her own mother and the forgotten history of her native South. Native Guard is haunted by the intersection of national and personal experience.
Monument by Natasha D. Trethewey
Two-time U.S. Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner Natasha Trethewey's new and selected poems, drawing upon Domestic Work, Bellocq's Ophelia, Native Guard, Congregation, and Thrall, while also including new work written over the last decade.
Survival Math by Mitchell Jackson
“A vibrant memoir of race, violence, family, and manhood…a virtuosic wail of a book” (The Boston Globe), Survival Math calculates how award-winning author Mitchell S. Jackson survived the Portland, Oregon, of his youth. This “spellbinding” (NPR) book explores gangs and guns, near-death experiences, sex work, masculinity, composite fathers, the concept of “hustle,” and the destructive power of addiction—all framed within the story of Mitchell Jackson, his family, and his community. Lauded for its breathtaking pace, its tender portrayals, its stark candor, and its luminous style, Survival Math reveals on every page the searching intellect and originality of its author. The primary narrative, focused on understanding the antecedents of Jackson’s family’s experience, is complemented by survivor files, which feature photographs and riveting short narratives of several of Jackson’s male relatives. “A vulnerable, sobering look at Jackson’s life and beyond, in all its tragedies, burdens, and faults” (San Francisco Chronicle), the sum of Survival Math’s parts is a highly original whole, one that reflects on the exigencies—over generations—that have shaped the lives of so many disenfranchised Americans. “Both poetic and brutally honest” (Salon), Mitchell S. Jackson’s nonfiction debut is as essential as it is beautiful, as real as it is artful, a singular achievement, not to be missed.
What We Inherit by Jessica Pearce Rotondi
"A beautiful amalgam of memoir, travelogue, and investigative report that moves with the propulsive forward energy of a thriller. A haunting chronicle of loss and redemption." --Ron Chernow, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Alexander Hamilton In the wake of her mother's death, Jessica Pearce Rotondi uncovers boxes of letters, declassified CIA reports, and newspaper clippings that bring to light a family ghost: her uncle Jack, who disappeared during the CIA-led "Secret War" in Laos in 1972. The letters lead her across Southeast Asia in search of the truth that has eluded her family for decades. What she discovers takes her closer to the mother she lost and the mysteries of a secret war that changed the rules of engagement forever. In 1943, 19-year-old Edwin Pearce jumps from a burning B-17 bomber over Germany. Missing in action for months, his parents finally learn he is a prisoner of war in Stalag 17. Ed survives nearly three years in prison camp and a march across the Alps before returning home. Ed's eldest son and namesake, Edwin "Jack," follows his father into the Air Force. But on the night of March 29, 1972, Jack's plane vanishes over the mountains bordering Vietnam and Ed's past comes roaring into the present. In 2009, Ed's granddaughter, Jessica Pearce Rotondi, is grieving her mother's death when she stumbles across declassified CIA documents, letters, and maps that reveal her family's decades-long search for Jack. What We Inherit is Rotondi's story of her own hunt for answers as she retraces her grandfather's 1973 path across Southeast Asia in search of his son. An excavation of inherited trauma on a personal and national scale, What We Inherit reveals the power of a father's refusal to be silenced and a daughter's quest to rediscover her voice in the wake of loss. As Rotondi nears the last known place Jack was seen alive, she grows closer to understanding the mystery that has haunted her family for generations--and the destructive impact of a family secret so big it encompassed an entire war.