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The Red Parts

Autobiography of a Trial
Maggie Nelson
Late in 2004, Maggie Nelson was looking forward to the publication of her book Jane: A Murder, a narrative in verse about the life and death of her aunt, who had been murdered thirty-five years before. The case remained unsolved, but Jane was assumed to have been the victim of an infamous serial killer in Michigan in 1969.

Then, one November afternoon, Nelson received a call from her mother, who announced that the case had been reopened; a new suspect would be arrested and tried on the basis of a DNA match. Over the months that followed, Nelson found herself attending the trial with her mother, and reflecting anew on the aura of dread and fear that hung over her family and childhood—an aura that derived not only from the terrible facts of her aunt’s murder but also from her own complicated journey through sisterhood, daughterhood, and girlhood. 

The Red Parts is a memoir, an account of a trial, and a provocative essay that interrogates the American obsession with violence and missing white women, and that scrupulously explores the nature of grief, justice, and empathy.

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$16.00
ISBN
978-1-55597-736-8
Format
Paperback
Publication Date
Pages
224
Trim Size
5.5 x 8.25
First time in paperback, a genre-busting memoir by a major American essayist

About the Author

Maggie  Nelson
Credit: Harry Dodge
Maggie Nelson is a poet, critic, and nonfiction author of several books including The Red Parts: Autobiography of a Trial, The Argonauts, The Art of Cruelty: A Reckoning, Bluets, and Jane: A Murder. She teaches in the School of Critical Studies at CalArts and lives in Los Angeles, California.
 
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Praise

  • “It’s Nelson’s articulation of her many selves—the poet who writes prose; the memoirist who considers the truth specious; the essayist whose books amount to a kind of fairy tale . . . that makes her readers feel hopeful.”The New Yorker
  • “Nelson’s resistance to the easy answer, her willingness to reach a kind of conclusion and then to break it . . . make The Red Parts an uneasy masterpiece.”—NPR.org
  • “Nelson’s account is both riveting and nuanced. The result is like Making a Murderer as told by Joan Didion.”Bust Magazine
  • “We sit beside Nelson and share her bewilderment, and by the end of the book we are forced to recognize that this is one of the greatest gifts an author can provide us: the chance to admit that we do not know what we think.”Elle.com
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