Summer Beach Reads

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On BRIC TV’s 112BK, Jessica Stockton Bagnulo, co-owner of Greenlight Bookstore in Brooklyn, presents her summer reading recommendations including Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press, 2019), Namwali Serpell’s The Old Drift Hogarth, 2019), Esi Edugyan’s Washington Black (Knopf, 2018), and Hugh Ryan’s When Brooklyn Was Queer (St. Martin’s Press, 2019).

Summer Reading Recommendations

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In this PBS NewsHour video, NPR’s Maureen Corrigan and the Washington Post’s Carlos Lozada highlight their favorite books for summer reading, which include Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press, 2019), Jill Ciment’s The Body in Question (Pantheon, 2019), and José Olivarez’s Citizen Illegal (Haymarket Books, 2018).

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous

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“It was an attempt to see if language can really be a bridge, as it is often aspired to be, and ultimately that it could fail.” In this video, Ocean Vuong speaks about the letter he wrote to his illiterate mother that inspired his debut novel, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Penguin Press, 2019). A profile of Vuong by Rigoberto González appears in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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The Kindergarten Teacher

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The Kindergarten Teacher stars Maggie Gyllenhaal as an aspiring poet and elementary school teacher who discovers the talents of a five-year-old boy in her class and becomes obsessed with protecting and encouraging his writing. Gyllenhaal and director Sara Colangelo commissioned poetry from Kaveh Akbar, Dominique Townsend, and Ocean Vuong to include as verses written by the two characters.

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Notebook Fragments

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“Sometimes I ask for too much just to feel my mouth overflow.” Ocean Vuong reads “Notebook Fragments” for Button Poetry at the 2016 AWP conference and book fair. Vuong, author of Night Sky With Exit Wounds (Copper Canyon Press, 2016), is featured in “Shadows of Words: Our Twelfth Annual Look at Debut Poets” in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Ocean Vuong

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"Outside, a soldier spits out / his cigarette as footsteps fill the square like stones / fallen from the sky. May all your Christmases be white / as the traffic guard unstraps his holster." Ocean Vuong shares poems from his debut collection, Night Sky With Exit Wounds (Copper Canyon Press, 2016), and speaks about the oral tradition of his family and his personal ties to the Vietnam War for a series on PBS NewsHour.

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