How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America

By Kiese Laymon
Agate Bolden, Paperback, 9781932841770, 148pp.

Publication Date: August 2013

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Description
Author and essayist Kiese Laymon is one of the most unique, stirring, and powerful new voices in American writing. "How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America" is a collection of his essays, touching on subjects ranging from family, race, violence, and celebrity to music, writing, and coming of age in Mississippi. In this collection, Laymon deals in depth with his own personal story, which is filled with trials and reflections that illuminate under-appreciated aspects of contemporary American life. New and unexpected in contemporary American writing, Laymon's voice mixes the colloquial with the acerbic, while sharp insights and blast-furnace heat calls to mind a black 21st-century Mark Twain. Much like Twain, Laymon's writing is steeped in controversial issues both private and public. This collection introduces Laymon as a writer who balances volatile concepts on a razor's edge and chops up much-discussed and often-misunderstood topics with his scathing humor and fresh, unexpected takes on the ongoing absurdities, frivolities, and calamities of American life.



About the Author
Kiese Laymon is a contributing editor at Gawker.com and has written for numerous publications, including "Esquire" and ESPN.com. He is also the author of a collection of essays entitled "How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America".



NPR
Tuesday, Aug 13, 2013

After an editor asked him to tone down his racial politics, the first-time author walked away from his book deal, moved to a smaller press and eventually published two books to critical acclaim. He hopes his story helps make the case for why publishers should welcome different voices to the table. More at NPR.org

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