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*A NewPages Editor's Pick
"Daringly, disarmingly raw and honest, Rosner's potent confrontation of the past and ambivalent acceptance of the present coalesce in a haunting, soulful portrait of grief, memory, belief, and comfort."
"A profound work of true beauty and mystery."
—LUIS ALBERTO URREA, author of The Devil's Highway and The Hummingbird's Daughter
"Whatever form she chooses for whatever story she has to tell, Rosner's work stays close to home, and close to the bone. ... [She] paints...with a fine artist's brush, the assuredness of her hand on the page...making poetry out of circumstances that are anything but." —Chicago Tribune
A fearless new work from prize-winning writer Elizabeth Rosner, author of the novels The Speed of Light, Blue Nude, and Electric City
Composed over a period of some twenty years, Gravity is Elizabeth Rosner's profoundly searching account of her experience as the daughter of Holocaust survivors. In an extraordinarily powerful mix of poetry and prose, Rosner traces the earliest remembered resonances of her parents' past and her dawning awareness of the war history that colored her family home during her youth in Schenectady, New York. She recounts her false starts in raising the subject with her father (a survivor of Buchenwald concentration camp), his piecemeal revelations, and their eventual travels together to the sites of the nightmare in Germany. And she evokes, courageously and heart-wrenchingly, her search for identity against the gravitational pull of her parents' experience and the traditional upbringing they've given her.
Like Rosner's celebrated novels, Gravity plumbs the deep complexities of inherited grief, but here the author discloses, with breathtaking candor and sensitivity, "what it felt like to grow up inside my family." Also featuring spellbinding artwork by Lola Fraknoi, these astonishing pages remind us that history happens at home and that the past is something we all embody, knowingly or not.
Page Count: 112
8.5 x 5.5 trade paperback