If They Come For Us by Fatimah Asghar

“From the moment our babies are born are we meant to lower them into the ground? To dress them in white? They send flowers before guns, thorns plucked from stem.” In her debut poetry collection, Asghar captures what it is like to be a Pakistani Muslim woman in America. She deftly weaves together her personal…

The Tradition by Jericho Brown

“But I promise you, I trust the maggotsWho live beneath the floorboardsOf my house to do what they mustTo any carcass more than I trustAn officer of the law of the land” Stolen from Goodreads: Jericho Brown’s daring new book The Tradition details the normalization of evil and its history at the intersection of the…

Time is a Mother by Ocean Vuong

“Because everyone knows yellow pain, pressed into American letters, turns to gold.Our sorrow Midas touched. Napalm with a rainbow afterglow.” In this deeply intimate poetry collection, Ocean Vuong searches for life after the death of his mother. He explores personal grief and loss, the meaning of family, and being the product of an American war…

Mrs Death Misses Death by Salena Godden

“Because once you have known Mrs Death there is no unknowing her. You have a mourning that sits inside you. It’s like having a stone in your centre; time smooths the edges like a pebble in a river, but it’s always there – a stone is a stone. Mrs. Death has spent an eternity of…

Call Us What We Carry by Amanda Gorman

“Anxiety is a living body, Poised beside us like a shadow. It is the last creature standing, The only beast who loves us Enough to stay.” Amanda Gorman’s new poetry collection reveals an energizing and remarkable new voice in American poetry. Call Us What We Carry is Gorman at her finest and is bursting with…

Moonlight Rests on My Left Palm by Yu Xiuhua

“Reading is a powerful activity: it calms one’s heart. When the mind is quiet, one can experience real joy.” Starting with the viral poem Crossing Half of China to Fuck You, Yu Xiuhua’s raw collection chronicles her life as a disabled, divorced, single mother in rural China. In defiance of the stigma attached to her…

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong

“What do we mean when we say survivor? Maybe a survivor is the last one to come home, the final monarch that lands on a branch already weighted with ghosts.” On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in…

The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

“My parents probably wanted a girl who would sit in the pews wearing pretty florals and a soft smile. They got combat boots and a mouth silent until it’s sharp as an island machete.” Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since she started to fill out and into…

Expand Your Book Boundaries: Indigenous Authors

I’m a big fan of expanding my book boundaries. I always look for novels from authors with different world views and experiences, from different countries, or discuss topics that I know little or nothing about. I love starting a book and having the author introduce something new and interesting to me. One of the areas…

Eyes Bottle Dark with a Mouthful of Flowers by Jake Skeets

“He bodies into mehalf cosmos, half coyote.” Eyes Bottle Dark with a Mouthful of Flowers, the winner of the 2018 National Poetry Series, is a debut collection of poems by a dazzling geologist of queer eros. Skeet’s collection is an unflinching portrait of the west, but it is also a fierce reclamation of a living…