Coming Soon! Winter 2020!
A devastating tornadic storm hits Alabama after erasing the State of Mississippi. Among the survivors are a distraught weatherman, a woman strapped to a dental chair, a man carrying a dead cat, and a golf-club wielding real-estate agent who encounters the undead. In this experimental novella, White’s poetic prose captures the endless trauma of catastrophe: the physical and emotional disorder, the chaotic and contingent patterns of events. Here, the reader will find no neat resolution. Life after grand-scale destruction and near-death experience is effectively another kind of cyclone: spinning and relentless, a state of free fall through dense and violent clouds.
"The title of Patti White’s Particularly Dangerous Situation may refer to a storm, perhaps even an apocalyptic one. It might refer to some collective delusion, or it might refer to the situation of living in a world that can produce such a storm. In the end, however, White’s dangerous situation comes down to the intellectual and artistic risk this lyrically narrative collection makes: turning disaster into art. White—who lived through a tornado that devastated Tuscaloosa, Alabama, in 2011—has a survivor’s sense of devastation tempered by an artist’s desire to transform the world. With a poet’s sense of language and gifted storyteller’s pacing, White channels voices (like Faulkner in As I Lay Dying) which provide lenses for understanding a loss that each one struggles to conceive, but the struggle to tell their stories on their terms provides the terra firma of this unique novella. After all, as White writes, '[We] are caught in a narrative that might not be survivable.'” ~ Jeff Newberry, co-author of Cross Country
"Poet Patti White concocts with this stunning and stuttering prose engine, Particularly Dangerous Situation, a Medusa-haired memo war on the fly, a transcript of Traumatic Stress Disorder before it gets a chance to be Post. I kept thinking of what black and white disasters were befalling Kansas when Toto wasn’t there anymore. White’s draining novella is all Coriolis effect and falling isobars of emotion, rich in vortices and bowing echoes of booming syntax. Diaphanous and occluded, the book is a catalogue of jagged and jittery clouds—mackerel smacked, nightmare’s tails, an Old Testament hardware store of hammers and anvils." ~ Michael Martone, author of The Moon Over Wapakoneta and Brooding
"Particularly Dangerous Situation consumes and entrances. In fact I became Jonah in the belly of a twister built by White. Each page—each sentence—is another edge, ledge, ledger, conflagration. And yet for every collapsing absence in this tour-de-force, White's poet-steeped prose wills a luminous architecture by which to know the way. And just as I finished this scorcher, I began it again. There is no finer compliment than that arc traced by leaping back to word one. This is White at her finest. I urge you toward PDS today!" ~ Abraham Smith, author of Destruction of Man
Laura Krughoff talks with Alison Nissen on the Florida Writer Podcast about Wake in the Night, Midwestern stories, and her debut novel, My Brother's Name.
Tune in this week to listen to Laura Krughoff's interview with Radio Tacoma.
Dial in to 101.9 FM from Tacoma, or stream online at https://radiotacoma.org from anywhere in the world.
Every day for the next few weeks at 8:00 AM, 2:00 PM, or 8:00 PM Pacific Time
Brooke Larson is the author of Pleasing Tree, published by Arc Pair Press, and Origami Drama, published by Quarterly West.
Brooke! Hi. Thanks so much for doing this Q&A.
I recently finished reading Origami Drama, which has a few overlapping essays / prose poems / dramas with Pleasing Tree and the one emotion that felt really solidified from reading both books is joy. Both books contain feelings of angst, loneliness, even something like existential despair, but instead of trekking into an abyss, you and your speakers seem to find a haven in these liminal spaces, between the sacred and the profane so to speak, the body and soul, in the folds in the Origami pieces, and in those liminal spaces, there is a lot of laughter and silliness and a love of life. Why do you think that is?
"With I and You, J. David Stevens has set an example
worth following." ~ David Amadio, Cleaver
Thanks to David Amadio and Cleaver editor, Nathaniel Popkin, for the review!
Read the full review here.
Brooke Larson talks with Eliot Parker on Now, Appalachia about her Arc Pair Press nonfiction collection, Pleasing Tree, essay writing, urban loneliness, and her Quarterly West chapbook, Origami Drama.
Patti White is the author of four collections of poems, Tackle Box (2002), Yellow Jackets (2007), Chain Link Fence (2013), and Pink Motel (2017), all from Anhinga Press. Recent chapbooks include A is for Aphasia (2013), Kontakion (2014), and District Flood (2014). Her poetry has appeared in journals including Iowa Review, North American Review, River Styx, Nimrod, DIAGRAM, Forklift Ohio, Parcel, McNeese Review, Slippery Elm, Vine Leaves, Waccamaw, and New Madrid; her nonfiction in Gulf Coast and Mulberry Fork Review. She lives in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
In White's novella-in-poetic-vignettes, Particularly Dangerous Situation, eight speakers, including the weatherman, survive the hours immediately after a storm so destructive that the entire State of Mississippi disappears.
Lee Tyler Williams is the author of the novel, Leechdom (New Plains Press, 2015). His writing has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, published in numerous magazines, and featured on National Public Radio. He was born in Dallas, Texas.
Williams's novella, Let It Be Our Ruin, takes place in Argentina where a Texas middle-school teacher searches for the last album of an obscure musician who was disappeared during Argentina's Dirty War in the 1980s.
This spring, we had the opportunity to ask J. David Stevens, author of I and You and Mexico is Missing, a few questions about writing, history, and, of course, love.
Our publisher, Heather Momyer, spoke with Alison Nissen, host of the The Florida Writer Podcast, about mini-books, publishing, and eating rice and beans and crickets.
You can listen to the interview here.