in the absence of the sun is a poetry collection that explores our midnight thoughts--the "nightmares" and "dreams" that haunt us when we are unable to sleep. This collection takes you through a night of insomnia, ruminating on ideas of self-doubt, loss, and hope for the future.
A breathtaking true story of a rescue mission undertaken by a young woman and her family in one of the most repressive countries in the world. Helie Lee often had heard her grandmother speak of an uncle, lost decades ago when he was a child during the family’s daring escape from North Korea. As an adult, he was still living there under horrid conditions. When her grandmother began to ail, Helie became determined to reunite her with her eldest son, despite tremendous odds. Helie’s mission became even more urgent when she realized that her first book, the bestselling novel Still Life with Rice, about the family’s escape, might have angered the North Korean government and put her uncle in danger. Pushing through rivers and forests, fighting the cold, bribing and manipulating border guards, gangsters, and secret service agents, Helie and her father finally achieve their goal. But there are many hurdles. Her uncle is forced to make a harrowing choice: leave his North Korean family behind or continue to live in oppression and starvation away from his beloved mother. And Helie has to face her deep, sometimes ambivalent, emotions about her identity in the family and as a Korean American woman. Unmarried and outspoken, she struggles in Korea, where women marry early and keep silent, and writes eloquently about the landscape there, both literal and cultural. She comes through a heartbreaking love affair only to face an intense and confusing relationship with the Guide—the man who, despite being crude and macho, ultimately helps to save her uncle and eventually his extended family through several daring acts of heroism. In the Absence of Sun is a riveting adventure story and a powerful tale of family bonds and reunion. “An eerie fear crawled through my flesh as I stood on the Chinese side of the Yalu River, gazing across the murky water into one of the most closed-off and isolated countries in the world. I couldn’t believe it. Even as my boots sank into the doughy mud, I had trouble coming to terms with the fact that I was actually standing there. . . . I was not prepared for the kind of despair and insane fear I felt that day. My wizened old uncle looked nothing like the sweet-faced teenager in the faded photograph that Halmoni kept pressed between the pages of her Bible. That day, at the Yalu River, staring helplessly into his terrorized face, I hadn’t fully realized what a dangerous thing I had done the year before. I had placed him and his family in danger. By including details of my uncle’s life in a book, I had alerted North Korea’s enigmatic leadership to the identity of my relatives in a nation where it was better to remain invisible.” —From In the Absence of Sun From the Hardcover edition.
"For Jesse life had always been so much better in the past although there were a lot of things he just wished he could forget. His father yelled about all the dandelions around the house, but Jesse felt bittersweet when he saw the fluffy little flowers sticking up from the dirt. He remembered how he'd and Megan would blow away the seeds and watch them waft away in the wind, leaving it just an empty stem in the world of flowers. But the truth was that the Dandelion wasn't a flower at all but a weed dressed up in a garment of seeds, trying to fit in the flower world but in the end feeling empty and alone once the wind touched it. That was how Megan felt all the time. The truth was that Depression crept up on you like the Devil and the Devil wanted to prevent you from seeing 'the good' in your future. And now it was creeping up on Jesse like a black cloud. It was hard enough feeling alone but now everyone else seemed to have forgotten they existed. If only she could reach out to Jesse in some way to make him understand that it wasn't his fault, but she had become just a ghost, lifeless and flickering at the edges. How could Jesse notice her now when she was just as lost as he was?" Joanna Strafford wants you to travel the world with Megan and Jesse as they embark on a journey of change, sadness and the bitter sweetness of true love and friendship. In the Absence of the Sun shows that you are not alone and their is a chance to discover that change can lead to beautiful things if you allow yourself the opportunity to see them."
The Sun and Her Flowers
Author: Rupi Kaur
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
From Rupi Kaur, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of milk and honey, comes her long-awaited second collection of poetry. A vibrant and transcendent journey about growth and healing. Ancestry and honoring one’s roots. Expatriation and rising up to find a home within yourself. Divided into five chapters and illustrated by Kaur, the sun and her flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming. A celebration of love in all its forms. this is the recipe of life said my mother as she held me in her arms as i wept think of those flowers you plant in the garden each year they will teach you that people too must wilt fall root rise in order to bloom
In the Absence of Light
Author: Adrienne Wilder
For years Grant Kessler has smuggled goods from one end of the world to the next. When business turns in a direction Grant isn't willing to follow he decides to retire and by all appearances he settles down in a nowhere town called Durstrand. But his real plan is to wait a few years and let the FBI lose interest, then move on to the distant coastal life he's always dreamed of. Severely autistic, Morgan cannot look people in the eye, tell left from right, and has uncontrolled tics. Yet he's beaten every obstacle life has thrown his way. And when Grant Kessler moves into town Morgan isn't a bit shy in letting the man know how much he wants him. While the attraction is mutual, Grant pushes Morgan away. Like the rest of the world he can't see past Morgan's odd behaviors Then Morgan shows Grant how light lets you see but it also leaves you blind. And once Grant opens his eyes, he loses his heart to the beautiful enigma of a man who changes the course of his life.
Still Life With Rice
Author: Helie Lee
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
As told by her granddaughter, the biography of a Korean woman born in 1912 into a socially repressive, male-dominated society, describes her struggles to overcome the pains of war, loss, and discrimination
Flying Close to the Sun
Author: Cathy Wilkerson
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
Flying Close to the Sun is the stunning memoir of a white middle-class girl from Connecticut who became a member of the Weather Underground, one of the most notorious groups of the 1960s. Cathy Wilkerson, who famously escaped the Greenwich Village townhouse explosion, here wrestles with the legacy of the movement, at times finding contradictions that many others have avoided: the absence of women’s voices then, and in the retelling; the incompetence and the egos; the hundreds of bombs detonated in protest which caused little loss of life but which were also ineffective in fomenting revolution. In searching for new paradigms for change, Wilkerson asserts with brave humanity and confessional honesty an assessment of her past—of those heady, iconic times—and somehow finds hope and faith in a world that at times seems to offer neither.
The Book of Why
Author: Judea Pearl, Dana Mackenzie
Publisher: Basic Books
How the study of causality revolutionized science and the world "Correlation is not causation." This mantra, chanted by scientists for more than a century, has led to a virtual prohibition on causal talk. Today, that taboo is dead. The causal revolution, instigated by Judea Pearl and his colleagues, has cut through a century of confusion and established causality--the study of cause and effect--on a firm scientific basis. His work explains how we can know easy things, like whether it was rain or a sprinkler that made a sidewalk wet; and how to answer hard questions, like whether a drug cured an illness. Pearl's work enables us to know not just whether one thing causes another: it lets us explore the world that is and the worlds that could have been. It shows us the essence of human thought and key to artificial intelligence. Anyone who wants to understand either needs The Book of Why.
A collection of poems that explore how we talk about (or never talk about) death, addiction, mental illness, and harmful relationships.
Poetry. A girl laughs like the birds and rides a bicycle into "horizons sinking slowly on their centers," despite—or in spite of the—the chaos around her. In Matt Henriken's stirring follow-up to his debut, ORDINARY SUN, he writes with an uninhibited resolve to explore intimate, everyday struggles and capture their reality in amber. Brokenness, anger, and the light of innocence power the poems of THE ABSENCE OF KNOWING. Meanwhile, a new beginning is captured in raw, smoldering, and cathartic expression, leaving an aftermath of aria despite discordant events.
Author: Lillian Olson
Ache is a powerful and vivid collection of free verse poetry that intimately explores the emotional impact of depression and anxiety as it manifests and transforms over time. This is a raw and honest personal account of mental illness offered to those looking to consider, to understand or to feel, in some small way, known. Ache is a unique journey that holds strange beauty in its truth.
Structured like an old-school mix-tape, Stuff I've Been Feeling Lately is Alicia Cook's lyric message to anyone who has dealt with addiction. "Side A" touches on all aspects of the human condition: life, death, love, trauma, and growth. "Side B" contains haunting black-out remixes of those poems.
Author: Bridgett Devoue
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Soft Thorns is a poetry collection that takes the reader on a journey through a young woman’s life—from reckoning with her looks and sexuality to dealing with the trauma of sexual assault, and finally through the highs and lows of young love found and lost. Bridgett Devoue shares her raw, human story and the lessons learned from living a life fully.
Author: Tahereh Mafi
Publisher: Harper Collins
The gripping first installment in New York Times bestselling author Tahereh Mafi’s Shatter Me series. One touch is all it takes. One touch, and Juliette Ferrars can leave a fully grown man gasping for air. One touch, and she can kill. No one knows why Juliette has such incredible power. It feels like a curse, a burden that one person alone could never bear. But The Reestablishment sees it as a gift, sees her as an opportunity. An opportunity for a deadly weapon. Juliette has never fought for herself before. But when she’s reunited with the one person who ever cared about her, she finds a strength she never knew she had.