This spring we've made it our mission (even more than usual) to celebrate new releases in the wake of cancelled launch parties, book festivals, and reading series. With 49th Shelf Launchpad, we're holding virtual launch parties here on our platform complete with witty banter and great insight to give you a taste of the books on offer. You can request these books from your local library, get them as e-books or audio books, order them from your local indie bookseller if they're delivering, buy them direct from the publisher or from online retailers.
Today we're launching The World is Mostly Sky, by Sarah Ens, which is celebrated by Rhea Tregebov who writes, "Whether she’s writing of girlhood or womanhood, of the prairies or the city, Ens’ vivid, forceful language fully engages and challenges her readers."
The Elevator Pitch. Tell us about your book in a sentence.
The World Is Mostly Sky depicts self-discovery and healing in the midst of catastrophe—both global and personal—made possible by sisterhood and shared story.
Describe your ideal reader.
Someone who feels things deeply, enjoys kitchen dance parties, and looks often at the sky.
What authors/books is your work in conversation with?
The World Is Mostly Sky has been influenced by the work of Di Brandt, Anne Carson, Billy-Ray Belcourt, Maggie Nelson, Amber Dawn—many, many. These voices that are full of yearning and rage and wonder.
I also think my book would like to have a conversation out on the moors with Wuthering Heights.
What is something interesting you learned about your book/yourself/your subject during the process of creating and publishing your book?
I learned how much I love to write love poems! This book is bursting with love poems for my sisters and friends, their resilience and brilliance and power.
What is your favourite kind of bird?
My favourite bird is the Burrowing Owl. In the book, I have a poem called “Burrowing,” which describes a scene at FortWhyte Alive’s Prairie Partners Exhibit, home to these little endangered owls as well as to prairie dogs.
An important part of any book launch are the thank you’s. Go ahead, and acknowledge someone whose support has been integral to this project.
Thank you to Sharon Caseburg, my very wise editor and steadfast cheerleader. Thank you for always reminding me to celebrate with cake.
What are you reading right now or next?
In this shining debut, identity and community converge in poems for a modern generation. Beginning with the open prairie skies of her youth, Sarah Ens maps an emergence into millennial womanhood, questioning feminine expectations and examining heartache and disembodiment during an age of personal and planetary upheaval. The World Is Mostly Sky looks backwards and inwards to find respite in stars, warm earth, and deep waters while rejoicing in the sacred bonds of sisterhood that offer the courage to meet our uncertain horizon.
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