Join us in celebrating the Australian launch of Lisa Birman’s new novel, How To Walk Away. Lisa will read from the novel, maybe chat a little, and sign copies.
About the Book
After three years in Afghanistan, Otis is adjusting to life back home. Struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder, he obsessively replays the traumas of war, cataloguing the names of the dead. Cat, his wife, is a genealogist who makes maps of families in an attempt to understand her world. When a car accident takes Otis’s left arm, he is grateful to bear a physical loss that makes his damaged emotional self visible. As he recovers, he and Cat confront the silences upon which their marriage is built.
Lisa Birman is a poet and novelist. She has just published her first novel, How To Walk Away (Spuyten Duyvil Press, 2015). She is the author of the poetry collection For That Return Passage – a Valentine for the United States of America (Hollowdeck Press), and co-editor of the anthology Civil Disobediences: Poetics and Politics in Action (Coffee House Press).
Lisa has been teaching writing in the United States, Australia, and the Czech Republic for the past fifteen years. She served as the Director of the prestigious Summer Writing Program at Naropa University’s Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics for twelve years. Originally from Melbourne, Australia, Lisa moved to Boulder, Colorado via New York and Seattle in 1995. Now a dual citizen, she’s still Australian at heart and often trades the Colorado winter for a few months of Melbourne summer to spend time with her family. She is the editor of a forthcoming collection of letters from Frances LeFevre to poet Anne Waldman, Dearest Annie, You wanted a report on Berkson’s class (Hanging Loose Press), and is currently completing her second novel.
Praise for How To Walk Away
“When poets turn to fiction, the results often dazzle. Birman elicits powerful effects from a pared down vocabulary, simple cadence, and streamlined sentences. Her writing is clean, economical. There is an incantory quality to it. We are meant to be immersed in Otis’s world, and we are.” – Judith Podell, American Book Review
“How To Walk Away is an extraordinary book: at once a gripping, intense, grace-filled story, and a profoundly insightful mapping of minds grappling with the diamond-edged particularities of their complicated human conditions. I was struck by this novel’s wisdom and the hard-won ease with which it wears it. A book to read slowly, to savor and to return to.” – Laird Hunt, author of Neverhome