Branwell: A Novel of the Brontë Brother

Douglas A. Martin (Author) Darcey Steinke (Introduction by)

Product Details

$16.95  $15.59
Soft Skull Press
Publish Date
July 07, 2020
5.5 X 8.2 X 0.8 inches | 0.6 pounds

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About the Author

Douglas A. Martin was born in Virginia and raised in Georgia. He earned a BA in English from the University of Georgia, an MFA in creative writing from the New School, and a PhD in English from the CUNY Graduate Center. Martin is the author of the poetry collections My Gradual Demise & Honeysuckle and Servicing the Salamander and co-author of The Haiku Year--a project that required him to compose a haiku a day. He has also published a collection of short stories, They Change the Subject, and a trilogy of prose pieces, Your Body Figured. His novels include Outline of My Lover, named an International Book of the Year in The Times Literary Supplement and a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award; Branwell: A Novel of the Brontë Brother; Once You Go Back ; and Wolf.


Praise for Branwell

"Branwell is an opium dream, akin to the quasi-documentary recits of Hervé Guibert--lyrical, hypnotic, genre-bending. Martin's novel functions as a fictional essay on the troubled, alluring legend of Branwell Brontë, as well as a truly poetic experiment in how to push autobiographical fantasy to its limits."--Wayne Koestenbaum

"In Branwell, his luminous, cameo-like new novel, Douglas Martin (Outline of My Lover) pays homage to this unlikely subject, creating a moving and evocative portrait of a boy doomed to enter history as a sad footnote to his sisters' lives. . . . the prose here is so finely wrought that the novel has an otherworldly feel." -- The Brooklyn Rail

"Douglas A. Martin has created a gem of a novel with Branwell: A Novel of the Brontë Brother, the story of Branwell Brontë and his failure to realize the expectations of others as well as himself. This depiction of the lone Brontë brother is dark and well-told in the magnificent voice of the author. As Branwell descends into addiction and self-destruction, Martin's fanciful prose depicts the lad's moods and actions delicately and perceptively, to the very end." --Largehearted Boy

"Martin has evocatively captured the sad parameters of Branwell's world, revealing the pattern of his self-destructive path through life in a way that is painful but also memorable."--The Irish Times

"A tender, tragic portrayal of a doomed artist...this volume's beautiful declarative sentences are perfectly fitted to this famously imaginative, headstrong family; they bring Branwell Brontë's world to light."--Publishers Weekly

Praise for Acker

"Douglas A. Martin's Acker is exactly the kind of literary criticism I want to read right now: an open-ended yet utterly thorough record of one deft, curious, intrepid mind beholding another. Personal when he needs to be and clinical when his investigation calls for it, Martin acts as the perfect counterpoint to Acker's all caps bombast." --Maggie Nelson

"In his unconventional approach to his equally unconventional subject--Acker was an iconoclastic experimental novelist, poet, essayist and feminist, who died of breast cancer in 1997--Martin's lyrical criticism blends unmistakable (yet unshowy) erudition and intellectual rigor with disarming intimacy and self-revelation." --The New York Times

"This is a book worthy of its subject: singular, unpredictable, a mongrel that occupies that rare, evocative space between genres. Expressing truths that transcend the stolid facts of conventional biography and literary analysis, Douglas A. Martin reveals how the act of writing is also, always, an act of self-authorship, of identity destruction and creation--and how Acker took this process to an extreme that still stuns, confounds, and inspires." --Astra Taylor

"Martin's is a lyric essay in many movements, fragmented and chaotic and academic and personal in ways Acker would have likely related to." --Porochista Khakpour