Celebrating Our Award Winners - 2021 Late Fall & Winter Releases
(l-r): Olivia Clare Friedman (photo: Aaron Mayes), Stephanie Grant, Hasanthika Sirisena, Amy Leach
Olivia Clare Friedman’s (’14) debut novel, Here Lies (Grove Atlantic, March 2022).
“Louisiana, 2042. Spurred by the effects of climate change, states have closed graveyards and banned burials, making cremation mandatory and the ashes of loved ones state-owned unless otherwise claimed. With poignance, poeticism, and deep insight in Here Lies, Olivia Clare Friedman gives us a stunning portrait of motherhood, friendship, and humanity in an alternate American South torn asunder by global warming. This is a stunning first novel from a unique and inventive writer.” Stephanie Grant’s (’99) third book, Disgust: A Memoir (Scuppernong Editions, November 2021).
“Novelist Stephanie Grant (Map of Ireland and The Passion of Alice) works to make sense of three generations of female self-disgust in her family while considering how it challenges both the American ideal of equality and our real-life experiences of intimacy. Funny, poignant, and rigorous, Disgust: A Memoir reveals how the most difficult emotion functions in both our private lives and collective imaginations.” Hasanthika Sirisena’s (’08) second book, Dark Tourist, received the 2020 Gournay Prize and was published by Mad Creek/Ohio State University Press in December 2021 as part of the 21st Century Essay Series.
“Dark tourism—visiting sites of war, violence, and other traumas experienced by others—takes different forms in Hasanthika Sirisena’s stunning excavation of the unexpected places (and ways) that personal identity and the riptides of history meet. Deftly blending reportage, cultural criticism, and memoir, Sirisena pieces together facets of her own sometimes fractured self to find wider resonances with human universals of love, sex, family, and art—and with language’s ability to both fail and save us. Dark Tourist becomes then about finding a home, if not in the world, at least within the limitless expanse of the page.” Amy Leach’s (’08) second collection of essays, The Everybody Ensemble: Donkeys, Essays, and Other Pandemoniums (FSG, November 2021).
“Amy Leach, the celebrated author of the transcendent Things That Are, invites you into The Everybody Ensemble, an effervescent tonic of a book. These short, wildly inventive essays are filled with praise songs, poetry, ingenious critique, soul-lifting philosophy, music theory, and whimsical but scientific trips into nature. Here, you will meet platypuses, Tycho Brahe and his moose, barnacle goslings, medieval mystics, photosynthetic bacteria, and a wholly fresh representation of the biblical Job. Equal parts call to reason and to joy, this book is an irrepressible celebration of our oddball, interconnected world. The Everybody Ensemble delivers unexpected wisdom and a wake-up call that sounds from within.”