elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention: The Unrhymables by Denise Duhamel & Julie Marie Wade

THE UNRHYMABLES: Collaborations in Prose

"This was like sitting next to a person who just told you random facts about themselves and other things… Weirdly, I liked it."

"Witty and clever, and, at the same time, incredibly relatable. Each chapter is a riff on a word or concept, structured almost like a conversation between friends. Within a single concept, the ideas range widely and touch on a stunning variety of experiences everyone will recognize, from the mundane to events of lifelong significance. It’s difficult to read it all in one go, as every paragraph-long riff begs to be savored. This is more of a book to sit on an end table, to be read aloud with close friends in short bursts. Truly excellent. I’ll be looking for this in hard copy."

"I enjoyed this book a great deal, and the snippets of prose would make it an ideal market for waiting rooms and the bathrooms of intellectual lesbians. This book was well organized, well written, and overall very well done. I think it has real potential as a specialty book."

Poetry. Literary Nonfiction. Essays. Two American women, born a generation apart, surf the feminist third wave in these thirteen thematically linked and formally innovative lyric essays. Julie Marie Wade was born the day Denise Duhamel took her first college class. Duhamel published her first poetry book Smile! in 1993, the year Wade entered high school. Duhamel's writing helped to shape the third wave of Wade's emerging feminist experience. Wade came of age reading Duhamel's confessional poetry but was also influenced by what James Atlas of The New York Times named "the age of literary memoir" in 1996. As a consequence, Wade grew comfortable genre-bending and writing hybrid prose. These writers met in 2012 when Wade was hired to teach in the MFA program at Florida International University where Duhamel had been teaching for more than a decade. Duhamel was mesmerized by Wade's work, although her own past collaborations had been in poetry. When Wade asked her new colleague why she didn't write nonfiction, Duhamel said, "I would, if I could write it with you!"

THE UNRHYMABLES {COLLABORATIONS IN PROSE} is a dual female reading experience that navigates the social clock, desire across the gendered spectrum, marriage, divorce, fertility/non-motherhood, violence, and body image with humor, poignancy, thoughtful reflection, and striking narrative scenes. Duhamel (b. 1961) and Wade (b. 1979) harmonize their unique voices that bracket "Generation X."

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Tags: rainbow awards 2018-2019

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