We have updated our Privacy Policy Please take a moment to review it. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the terms of our updated Privacy Policy.

Obit

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781472157485

Price: £10.99

ON SALE: 5th May 2022

Genre: Literature & Literary Studies / Poetry

Select a format:

ebook

Disclosure: If you buy products using the retailer buttons above, we may earn a commission from the retailers you visit.

Los Angeles Times Book Prize
PEN Voelcker Award
Anisfield-Wolf Book Prize
New York Times 100 Notable Books
Time Magazine’s 100 Must-Read Books
NPR’s Best Books
National Book Award in Poetry, Longlist
National Book Critics Circle, Finalist
Griffin Poetry Prize, Shortlist
Frank Sanchez Book Award

After her mother died, poet Victoria Chang refused to write elegies. Rather, she distilled her grief during a feverish two weeks by writing scores of poetic obituaries for all she lost in the world. These poems reinvent the form of newspaper obituary to both name what has died (‘civility,’ ‘language,’ ‘the future,’ ‘Mother’s blue dress’) and the cultural impact of death on the living. Loss, and the love for the dead, becomes a conduit for self-expression. In this unflinching and lyrical book, Chang meets her grief and creates a powerful testament for the living.

Chang’s new collection explores her father’s illness and her mother’s death, treating mortality as a constantly shifting enigma. A serene acceptance of grief’ New York Times, “100 Notable Books of 2020”

‘Exceptional… Chang’s poems expand and contract to create surprising geometries of language, vividly capturing the grief they explore’ Publishers Weekly

Reviews

These are poems that reproduce the logic and feeling of loss?a gift for anyone who has struggled to find words to express grief
NPR
Chang's new collection explores her father's illness and her mother's death, treating mortality as a constantly shifting enigma. A serene acceptance of grief
New York Times '100 Most Notable Books 2020'
Chang has created a unique poetic construct . . . The feeling of hope is a theme throughout this solid collection, in variations Chang evokes with grace
Booklist
Exceptional . . . Chang's poems expand and contract to create surprising geometries of language, vividly capturing the grief they explore
Publishers Weekly, starred review
Chang is consistently a poet who resurrects mediums, her work living within surprising spaces and forms, and both exposing and surpassing the possibilities for those structures . . . Chang has the rare poetic talent to follow the edges of dark comedy to find sentiment rather than irony
The Millions
Each poem is a masterwork of compression and compassion
Kenyon Review
[Obit] is heartbreaking and enthralling. It sings and instructs. It is a world all its own
Ilya Kaminsky, The Week
Victoria Chang has created something powerful and unconventional. These poems are zinger curveballs
Los Angeles Review of Books
'In Chang's telling, grief shoots off in all directions, killing off dozens of other things: appetite, blame, the deceased's old clothes. Chang sets out to catalogue them all, and does so with rangy metaphysical imagination and terse precision...[a] solemn, gorgeous, understated book'
Stephanie Sy-Quia, TLS