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Faber announces a collection of poetry by Barbara Kingsolver

Faber is delighted to announce the publication of a collection of poetry by internationally acclaimed and bestselling author Barbara Kingsolver. Lavinia Singer has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from David Grossman of David Grossman Literary Agency for publication in the UK in August 2020. HarperCollins will publish in the US in September.

How to Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons) offers emotionally rich reflections on the practical, the spiritual and the wild. The book’s interwoven sections form a carefully patterned whole, from its ‘How to’ poems balancing wry pragmatism with illuminating wisdom, to its quiet, clear-eyed elegies examining death as a vivid slice of life. From start to finish, the poignant meditations in this generous collection trace the complex ties that bind us to one another, and to an untamed world beyond ourselves. In more intimate terms than ever before, Kingsolver dares the reader into a deeper embrace of all that lies between birth and death. ‘Begin with a quailing heart’, she writes, ‘for here you stand on the fault line.’

How to Fly will delight Kingsolver’s devotees and welcome new readers to her startling verse.

Barbara Kingsolver said:

‘Writing poems is a conundrum for me, not my professional identity, but a passion as deep as memory. In recent years, for reasons I can’t explain, they’ve started to overrun the house. Far more personal than any other work I’ve done, more revelatory on matters that I never take out in public, these poems have filled up a whole secret drawer. They owe their bare intimacy to the fact that I never really expected them to be published. And now, to my immense and happy surprise, here they are.’

Lavinia Singer, Editor, said:

‘How special it feels to be sharing these revelatory poems. There is much in them to recognise from Barbara’s humane and politically engaged fiction, but so much to discover, thanks to the new angles of perception and imaginative handling of subjects that the verse forms bring. We are all delighted to be publishing How to Fly (In Ten Thousand Easy Lessons) here at Faber.’

Louisa Joyner, Publishing Director, said:

‘It is always a joyous event publishing any new work from Barbara but the intimacy of this collection is making it very special to all of us. Unsheltered continues to win fans and gain readers at a faster rate than ever, so it feels like a glorious moment to celebrate Barbara’s oeuvre – and her bond with Faber – across our publishing, from her novels to her poetry.’

Barbara Kingsolver’s books of fiction, poetry and creative nonfiction are widely translated and have won numerous literary awards including the Women’s Prize for Fiction, awarded to The Lacuna; Flight Behaviour was also shortlisted. Her latest novel, Unsheltered, was published in 2018 to great acclaim. She is the founder of the PEN/Bellwether Prize, and in 2000 was awarded the National Humanities Medal, her country’s highest honour for service through the arts. Prior to her writing career, she studied and worked as a biologist. She lives with her husband on a farm in southern Appalachia.