The River You Touch, by Chris Dombrowski

Staff Pick

When Dombrowski listens to a native storyteller, he’s transported by the sheer “elemental presence” of her words—they strike as viscerally as “pitched water running over a rock.” Readers of his almost preternaturally aware memoir/nature chronicle will feel a similar power in this poet’s own prose. He can see a moonlit salmon “on the pearl-colored gravel…lanky from territorial battles …tail shredded, misaligned kype jaw bulbous and scarred", or listen to a male meadowlark sing “a combination of notes that mimic the moving water’s unpredictability.” Being open to such experiences is the ideal life for this writer and fishing guide, his way of “becoming infused by the immensity” of Montana’s “infinitely wise landscape.” But even here, life is not ideal. Dombrowski worries about how he—and the planet—will afford his three children. But after a year teaching in Michigan, he returns to the mountains and a life that may be materially “threadbare,” but that allows him and his children the wisdom that comes only from knowing “places of deep resonant quietude.”

The River You Touch: Making a Life on Moving Water: Making a Life on Moving Water By Chris Dombrowski Cover Image
ISBN: 9781639550630
Availability: Coming Soon—Pre-Order Now
Published: Milkweed Editions - October 11th, 2022

Kick the Latch, by Kathryn Scanlan

Staff Pick

Scanlan crafted this narrative from extensive interviews and it meets the definition of “novel” chiefly in the sense of being “new or unusual” in genre, rather than invention of character, plot, or voice. Letting her protagonist speak for herself—possibly literally—this immediate and immediately engaging work is the story of Sonia, who became absorbed in the world of horses at an early age, finding with them the companionship and understanding she missed from people. At 16 she fled her difficult home life for good, embarking on a long career as a trainer. It was a grueling, sometimes brutal life, made of long days, exhausting physical labor, injuries, and, for women, scorn and sexual assault. But Sonia thrived on it, and her monologue takes us into the rich culture and “particular language” of the racetrack, where Humpty Dumpty and Dark Side could name either a horse or a rider, and where, when a horse gallops, “there’s a thousand pounds of pressure held up by that one thin leg, that little hoof the size of a hand-held ashtray.”

Kick the Latch By Kathryn Scanlan Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811232005
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: New Directions - September 27th, 2022

The World as We Knew It, Edited by Amy Brady and Tajja Isen

Staff Pick

To counter the overwhelming nature of climate change, Brady and Isen sought to map ”connection[s] between the personal and the planetary” by asking 19 writers to chronicle what's affected them most in this turbulent time so far. With names including Lydia Millet, Omar El Akkad, and Lidia Yuknavitch, the anthology meets high standards of range and literary quality. Starting with the unbreathable air of Bangkok, examining the long shadows of hurricanes Katrina, Sandy, et al,  and ending with revelations of melting Arctic permafrost as astounding—a prehistoric wolf cub--as they are chilling—potential new viruses—these vivid essays offer urgent glimpses of what no one is prepared for, whether it’s getting through Wisconsin winters of snow so heavy it “felt like the world was caving in,” or climbing a flooded Sierra Nevada where “a mistake could kill you,” or, an insistent theme, struggling with whether to bring children into all this and what to tell them if you do, since there’s “no playbook for parenting in the apocalypse.”


The World As We Knew It: Dispatches From a Changing Climate By Amy Brady (Editor), Tajja Isen (Editor) Cover Image
By Amy Brady (Editor), Tajja Isen (Editor)
ISBN: 9781646220304
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Catapult - June 14th, 2022