Ocean Vuong with Jess Boyd

We can think of few novels in recent years, debut or otherwise, that have generated as much excitement and anticipation as there is for award-winning poet Ocean Vuong’s shatteringly beautiful novel - which is a debut - On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press). The author of the unforgettably powerful poetry collection, Night Sky With Exit Wounds (Copper Canyon Press) has written a poetically charged work of prose.

“Ocean Vuong runs up against the limits of language—this book is addressed to a mother who cannot read it—and expands our sense of what literature can make visible, thinkable, felt across borders and generations and genres. This is a courageous, embodied inquiry into the tangle of colonial and personal histories. It is also a gorgeous argument for astonishment over irony—for the transformative possibilities of love.”—Ben Lerner.

“This is one of the best novels I’ve ever read. I always want my favorite poets to write novels and here it’s happened. Ocean Vuong is a master. This book a masterpiece. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is an ode to loss and struggle, to being a Vietnamese American, to Hartford, Connecticut, and it’s a compassionate epistolary ode to a mother who may or may not know how to read. I dog-eared so many pages the book almost collapsed—I almost did.”—Tommy Orange.

Onstage with Ocean Vuong this evening will be writer and community organizer/activist Jess Boyd.

Co-presented by THE SEATTLE PUBLIC LIBRARY, VIETNAMESE FRIENDSHIP ASSOCIATION, and ELLIOTT BAY BOOK COMPANY. Free admission is on a first-come, first-serve basis.

More information here.

Thursday, June 20, 2019 - 7:00pm
Central Seattle Public Library
1000 Fourth Avenue
Seattle, WA 98101
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