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Ocean Vuong

On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous

“They say nothing lasts forever but they're just scared it will last longer than they can love it.” 

On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family's history that began before he was born — a history whose epicenter is rooted in Vietnam — and serves as a doorway into parts of his life his mother has never known, all of it leading to an unforgettable revelation.

At once a witness to the fraught yet undeniable love between a single mother and her son, it is also a brutally honest exploration of race, class, and masculinity. Asking questions central to our American moment, immersed as we are in addiction, violence, and trauma, but undergirded by compassion and tenderness, On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is as much about the power of telling one's own story as it is about the obliterating silence of not being heard.

 

Product Info

Publisher: ‎ Penguin Press
Date: June 4, 2019
Language: ‎ English
Paperback: ‎ 248 pages
ISBN-13: ‎ 978-1529110685

Full Description

Poet Ocean Vuong's debut novel is a shattering portrait of a family, a first love, and the redemptive power of storytelling On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family's history that began before he was born — a history whose epicenter is rooted in Vietnam — and serves as a doorway into parts of his life his mother has never known, all of it leading to an unforgettable revelation. At once a witness to the fraught yet undeniable love between a single mother and her son, it is also a brutally honest exploration of race, class, and masculinity. Asking questions central to our American moment, immersed as we are in addiction, violence, and trauma, but undergirded by compassion and tenderness, On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is as much about the power of telling one's own story as it is about the obliterating silence of not being heard.

With stunning urgency and grace, Ocean Vuong writes of people caught between disparate worlds, and asks how we heal and rescue one another without forsaking who we are. The question of how to survive, and how to make of it a kind of joy, powers the most important debut novel of many years.

Content Warnings

Addiction
Animal violence
Bullying
Cancer
Death (grandparent)
Drug use
Homophobia (including slurs)
Parental abuse
Racism
Sexual assault
Trauma
War (past)

Packaging

Out & Proud- your purchase will arrive in a box covered in colour - loudly celebrating your purchase from us to you, a member or ally of the rainbow community!

A Quiet Pride- this discreet option is designed to keep you safe while still getting your favourite books in the mail. If you are not out at home or you don’t feel like advertising your rainbow purchase, you will receive a plain brown box with no identifying markers.

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