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Birth: A Literary Companionby University Of Iowa Press
Synopses & Reviews
Parenthood is full of secrets. The pregnant body, labor, the mysteries of a new child, the transformation of relationships — men and women are themselves reborn as they become parents. Birth: A Literary Companion collects the work of fifty accomplished writers to guide new parents through this complex emotional terrain.
Arranged chronologically — from early pregnancy to late infancy — Birth can be read solidly or dipped into in the middle of the night. Here, a curious reader can find a frank, funny essay about breastfeeding, a vividly accurate story about labor, or a tender poem about the terror of holding a newborn child. Birth covers the huge emotional spectrum that new parents pass through — from fear and loathing to uncontainable joy. Embracing all kinds of parents — gay and straight, mothers and fathers, married and single, adoptive and biological — the book unlocks, through literature, the secrets of parenthood that science and society rarely reveal.
An enduring guide to the emotional and spiritual changes of parenthood, Birth will be an important addition to both parenting and literature bookshelves.
"Kristin Kovacic and Lynne Barrett have identified a new genre, birth literature, and delivered something extraordinary: a companionable anthology, an imaginative guidebook — a spiritual Baedeker — to the daunting country of parenthood. It ought to be essential reading for anyone who is setting out for (or has already entered) this strangely beautiful, alarming, and mysterious territory." Edward Hirsch, author of How to Read a Poem: And Fall in Love with Poetry
"In this marvelous anthology, a chorus of extraordinary writers has been summoned to examine the endlessly fascinating experience of human nativity. In tributes that vary from joyful to unflinching to troubled to lyrical they honor that most fundamental, most immutable truth: all births are complicated, emotionally." Madeleine Blais, author of Uphill Walkers: A Memoir of a Family
"A wonderful collection about a transforming experience, the book is sure to be thoroughly enjoyed by expectant parents." Booklist
About the Author
Kristin Kovacic teaches creative writing at the Creative and Performing Arts High School in Pittsburgh. Her short fiction, essays, and poetry have appeared in many literary magazines, including the Kansas Quarterly, Cimarron Review, and Women's Studies Quarterly.
Lynne Barrett teaches creative writing at Florida International University in Miami. An Edgar Award-winning short story writer, she is the author of The Secret Names of Women and The Land of Go.
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