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