In 1980, back when every book that came through our warehouse could be adequately celebrated, Jean Day took beautiful polaroid portraits of each new book as they arrived. Now, with over 1000 new titles coming through SPD each year, there are sadly too many to individually photograph.

Nonetheless, we want to honor some of our current authors, and their incredible book designers with a new Book Portrait Series - lovingly staged by Publicity Assistant Franny Weed.

And of course, if you like what you see, please support them by buying a copy! Each of these books is currently on sale: 

25% OFF 

(Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2010)
By Shane McCrae

"Some books come down like gods dying to transform us out of our empty, shattered lives. MULE is such a book. Never shying away from sudden confusions of pain and beauty, Shane McCrae's questions are not why so much pain? why so much beauty? but, instead, how can they remake us? McCrae's is a living, breathing poetry made of wisdom and wrenching song."—Katie Ford

The Sacramento of Desire
(Sidebrow Books, 2020)
By Julia Bloch

"Julia Bloch's horologic epic proceeds by chopped narrative, gorgeous musics, casual talk tatters, quote startles, and deep wash-overs, all infected with loss. It's a quest built from the logics of encountering a monstrous fertility-industrial complex. The work stirs and sifts this 'uncompostable grief,' and yet fellow poets, friends, and interlocutors shine behind every line. This book brims with community, crowded and leavened by voices."—Allison Cobb

Antigona Gonzalez
(Les Figues Press, 2016)
By Sara Uribe, translated by John Pluecker 

"This brilliant and moving book revives the story of Antigone to confront the horrifying violence shrouded within the present landscape—Antigone, a solitary figure before the law, facing certain death, who invokes a way of resistance at once textual and political. Sophocles' play resonates throughout this act of poetic testimony and fierce interpretation, making emphatic graphic marks precisely where there is no trace of loss."—Judith Butler

American Purgatory
(Eyewear Publishing, 2017)
By Rebecca Gayle Howell

"AMERICAN PURGATORY is a story of the working class, a dystopia set in a near-future United States marked by severe drought, herbicidal warfare, and a totalitarian climate of poverty. This purgatory is populated by those who believe that if they work hard enough, they will be set free. Against this backdrop, three unlikely characters begin a journey that will take them away from work, belief, and even each other, until the protagonist uncovers a truth about this place that indeed sets her free. Equal parts Dante and Cormac McCarthy, AMERICAN PURGATORY is a coming-of-age for capitalism written in the decade of tea-party terror."

(Les Figues Press,  2015)
By Colin Winnette

"Winnette has a talent for conjuring characters and situations that exist purely to serve his work. These people are faceless with no discernible backstory, creating an unsettling alternate reality that we can dip into for 80 pages or so. The book leaves an impression not unlike a dream, as if you've just witnessed something troubling, but out of the corner of your eye or through the confounding texture of a sheer curtain."—Connor Ferguson

The Somnambulist
(Horse Less Press, 2016)
By Lara Mimosa Montes

"THE SOMNAMBULIST, a no-holds-barred monodrama, jolts the reader awake. Lara Mimosa Montes is a startling and powerful poet, who opts for vertigo, and whose greatest virtue may be her ability to perform flamboyantly while abstaining from histrionics—to recuse herself, with the exercise of a triumphant minimalism, from her own virtuoso spotlight. Braiding together numbness and desire, she brilliantly demonstrates, in the close-miked fashion of a cabaret Maurice Blanchot, the weirdness of being a witness, a quietly divulging voice."—Wayne Koestenbaum

Kala Pani
(1913 Press, 2013)
By Monica Mody

"Monica Mody's KALA PANI is an allegorical screenplay that's both playful and terrifying. KALA PANI begins in a familiar, stripped down setting: a stage, actors, a Godotian tree as prop. But soon the Beckett allusions fray into the Boschian as the play embarks on a hallucinatory, postcolonial and tech-riven romp into the deprived lives of World Travelers. These world travelers (aka, Migrants? Writers? Revolutionaries? Insurgents?) are marooned on a colony island and spin tales such as the story of two sisters, Othershape, and Sameshape. KALA PANI is packed with stories-within-stories and voices that range from officialese to rebellious neologistic song: 'the blubs squeezed themselves into a phalanx of pulped fury.' With each scene, you descend into stranger circles of hell and hope. KALA PANI encompasses plenitude; it is uncomfortable, startling, timeless, and ultimately original."—Cathy Park Hong

(Birds, LLC, 2018)
By Chase Berggrun

"R E D is an erasure of Bram Stoker's Dracula. A long poem in 27 chapters, R E D excavates from Stoker's text an original narrative of violence, sexual abuse, power dynamics, vengeance, and feminist rage while wrestling with the complexities of gender, transition, and monsterhood."

(Black Lawrence Press, 2014)
By Bettina Judd

"Joice Heth. Lucy Zimmerman. Betsey Harris. Anarcha Wescott. Bettina Judd ensures you will remember the names of four women assaulted by science, violated by curiosity--survivors of physical invasion and torturous experiments. She presents their dignity, heretofore denied, as imagined in their own voices in conversation and parallel with a modern speaker, similarly (coldly) ensnared by a medical machine powered by detachment at best, cruelty at worst. Judd re-centers the narrative, however, to where it belongs--on the person(s) confronted, examined, in pain-not on the problem to be studied or solved. In visceral language that indicts, worships, haunts, and empowers, Patient illuminates 'a dynasty, a bloodline, a body' imbued with the full human spectrum of emotion and brilliance."—Khadijah Queen

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