The Palace of Illusions (Hardcover)
Soft Skull Press, 9781593765422, 243pp.
Publication Date: September 1, 2014
In her new collection, gifted poet and novelist Kim Addonizio uses her literary powers to bring to life a variety of settings, all connected through the suggestion that things in the known world are not what they seem. In "Beautiful Lady of the Snow," young Annabelle turns to a host of family pets to combat the alienation she feels caught between her distracted mother and ailing grandfather; in "Night Owls," a young college student's crush on her acting partner is complicated by the bloodlust of being half-vampire; in "Cancer Poems," a dying woman turns to a poetry workshop to make sense of her terminal diagnosis and final days; in "Intuition," a young girl's sexual forays bring her closer to her best friend's father; and in the collection's title story, a photographer looks back to his youth spent as a young illusionist under the big tent and his obsessive affair with the carnival owner's wife. The stories in this collection have appeared in journals ranging from Narrative Magazine to The Fairy Tale Review, and include the much loved "Ever After," which was featured on NPR's "Selected Shorts." Distracted parents, first love, the twin forces of alienation and isolation: the characters in The Palace of Illusions all must contend with these challenges, trafficking in the fault lines between the real and the imaginary, often in a world not of their making.
About the Author
Kim Addonizio is the author of a previous story collection, In the Box Called Pleasure; two novels Little Beauties and My Dreams Out in the Street; five poetry collections; and two books on writing poetry. She recently collaborated with woodcut artist Charles D. Jones on My Black Angel: Blues Poems and Portraits. She has received numerous honors for her writing, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and two NEA Fellowships, and was a National Book Award Finalist in 2000. She lives in Oakland, CA and New York City and teaches private writing workshops in person and online. She plays harmonica with the word/music group Nonstop Beautiful Ladies and volunteers for The Hunger Project, a global organization empowering the poorest people in the world to end their own hunger and poverty. Visit her at kimaddonizio.com.