“No one writes with a more acute attention to the immediate world than David Baker, but his relish of particulars is always subject to a broader meditation that looks behind and ahead… David Baker is one of our finest poets.” — Rodney Jones, author of Pulitzer Prize finalist Elegy for the Southern Drawl and Village Prodigies
From the publisher: A sweeping poetic achievement, Swift represents David Baker’s evolution as one of American poetry’s most significant voices.
Gathering poems from eight collections—including the widely acclaimed Changeable Thunder (2001) and his masterful latest, Scavenger Loop (2015)—and adding three suites of new poems, David Baker proves himself once again “the most expansive and moving poet to come out of the American Midwest since James Wright” (Marilyn Hacker). With equal curiosity and candor, he explores the many worlds we all inhabit—from our most intimate relationships to the wider social worlds of neighborhoods, villages, and our complex national identity, to the environmental community we all share.
David Baker’s last collection was Never-Ending Birds, which won the Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Prize. His many honors include fellowships and awards from the Poetry Society of America, the Pushcart Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. Baker lives in Granville, Ohio, is the poetry editor of the Kenyon Review, and is the Thomas B. Fordham Chair of Poetry and Professor of English at Denison University. His work appeared most recently in NER 37.1 and is forthcoming this summer.
Swift can be found at your local independent bookstore or online.
“Expertly orchestrated and engaging… Of the novels to come out of the #MeToo moment to date, none is more riveting, insightful, and unsettling.” — Kirkus (starred review)
From the publisher: An atmospheric and unsettling drama from a novelist acclaimed as “the literary descendent of Dostoevsky and Patricia Highsmith” (Boston Globe), Afternoon of a Faun combines a sharply observed study of our shifting social mores with a meditation on what makes us believe, or disbelieve, the stories people tell about themselves.
James Lasdun is the author of The Fall Guy, The Horned Man, and Seven Lies, several poetry and short story collections, and a memoir. He teaches at the New York State Writers Institute and lives in upstate New York. His writing appeared in NER 30.3.
Afternoon of a Faun can be purchased at your local independent bookseller or online.
“These astounding poems by Jericho Brown don’t merely hold a lens up to the world and watch from a safe distance; they run or roll or stomp their way into what matters―loss, desire, rage, becoming―and stay there until something necessary begins to make sense.” ―U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith
From the publisher: Beauty abounds in Jericho Brown’s daring new poetry collection, despite and inside of the evil that pollutes the everyday. The Tradition questions why and how we’ve become accustomed to terror: in the bedroom, the classroom, the workplace, and the movie theater. Brown interrupts complacency by locating each emergency in the garden of a body, where living things grow and wither―or survive. In the urgency born of real danger, Brown’s work is at its most innovative… Jericho Brown is a poet of eros: here he wields this power as never before, touching the very heart of our cultural crisis.
Jericho Brown is the recipient of a Whiting Award and of fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts. His poems have appeared in The New Republic, The New Yorker, The New York Times, TIME, and several of The Best American Poetry anthologies. His first book, Please (New Issues, 2008), won the American Book Award. His second book, The New Testament (Copper Canyon, 2014), won the Anisfeld-Wolf Book Award. He serves as poetry editor for The Believer. He is an associate professor of English and Creative Writing and Director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University in Atlanta. His poems are featured in NER 28.1 (2007) and NER 35.3 (2014).
The Tradition can be purchased online or at your local independent bookseller.
“The poems weave recorded language from actors and soldiers with descriptions of the ‘games’ collected over Stone’s two-year anthropological study at Pineland…. Pineland’s setting allows the poet to explore the morality of war from a perspective that is analytical and viscerally haunting.” —Publishers Weekly
From the publisher: Kill Class is based on Nomi Stone’s two years of fieldwork in mock Middle Eastern villages at military bases across the United States. The speaker in these poems, an anthropologist, both witnesses and participates in combat training exercises staged at “Pineland,” a simulated country in the woods of the American South, where actors of Middle Eastern origin are hired to theatricalize war, repetitively pretending to bargain and mourn and die. With deft lyrical attention, these documentary poems reveal the nuanced culture and violence of the war machine—alive and well within these basecamp villages, the American military, and, ultimately, the human heart.
Nomi Stone is a poet, anthropologist, and author of a previous book of poems, Stranger’s Notebook (TriQuarterly, 2008). Winner of a 2018 Pushcart Prize, Stone’s poems appear recently in POETRY Magazine, American Poetry Review, The Best American Poetry, Tin House, New England Review, and elsewhere. Stone has a PhD in Cultural Anthropology from Columbia University, an MPhil in Middle East Studies from Oxford, and an MFA in Poetry from Warren Wilson College. She teaches at Princeton University and her ethnography in progress, Human Technology and American War, is a finalist for the University of California Press Atelier Series. Read her poem “Wonder Days,” originally published in NER 38.4.
Order Kill Class from the publisher here, or at your local independent book store.
“An older man, a younger woman, show biz, nakedness—but wait! This is the hilarious version with characters so sympathetic you root for them all, even the guy.” – Patricia Marx, New Yorker humorist and author of Him Her Him Again the End of Him
From the publisher: An incredibly timely, terrifically witty and moving debut about a young writers’ assistant on a late night comedy show and what transpires when she accepts an invitation from its enigmatic host to spend a long weekend at his mansion in Connecticut.
At once hilarious and poignant, brilliantly incisive and terrifically propulsive, Stay Up with Hugo Best is an incredibly timely exploration of sexual politics in the #MeToo age, and the unforgettable story of one young woman’s poignant stumbling into adulthood.
Erin Somers’s writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Tin House Open Bar, Ploughshares, American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s, the Cincinnati Review, and many other publications. She holds an MFA from the University of New Hampshire and was a 2016 NYC Center for Fiction Emerging Writer Fellow and a 2016 Millay Colony resident. She lives in Beacon, New York, with her husband and daughter, and was an NER fiction reader from 2015-2017.
Stay Up with Hugo Best can be ordered here from the publisher, or purchased at your local independent bookseller.
“Owen McLeod knows how to pluck what Pound called ‘the natural object’ from everyday life and endow it with symbolic force. He mingles a sensuous feel for vowels and consonants, with a graceful play of speech rhythms and a gift for revelatory strangeness. I’ve copied out his lines in my notebook for the sheer pleasure of it.” —Rosanna Warren, judge of the 2018 Vassar Miller Prize in Poetry
From the publisher: Owen McLeod’s extraordinary debut maps the contours of an ordinary life: the rise and fall of romantic love, the struggle against mental illness, and the unending quest for meaning and transcendence. Ranging from sonnets and sestinas to experimental forms, these poems are unified by their musicality, devotion to craft, and openness of heart.
Owen McLeod is a studio potter and a professor of philosophy at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, where he lives. He has held visiting positions at Yale and Mt. Holyoke. His poems have been published in such journals as Massachusetts Review, Ploughshares, The Southern Review, and New England Review, in NER 36.4.
Dream Kitchen can be ordered here from the publisher, or purchased at your local independent bookstore.