Happiness Is a Chemical in the Brain


Product Details

W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
5.4 X 0.6 X 8.1 inches | 0.35 pounds
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About the Author

Lucia Perillo has published one previous collection, Dangerous Life, which received the Norma Farber award from the Poetry Society of America for the best first book of 1989. Her poems have appeared in such magazines as the Atlantic and the Kenyon Review and have been included in the Pushcart and the Best American Poetry anthologies. In 2000, she earned a MacArthur fellowship. A former park ranger and teacher at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, she now lives in Olympia, Washington.


Darned if this book isn't more cheerful than anything else. It's very funny and often beautiful, though not in the corny way of fiction that glorifies bad behavior or romanticizes hardship. It's deeper than that, in the way that earned wisdom always is. . . . [Perillo] brings to these stories the poet's gift for creating images in the mind so apt, they're surprising, even funny.
Starred review. Emotionally unflinching stories of considerable power, wonder and humor.
Starred review. [Perillo] strikes a glorious balance between wryly intelligent prose and emotional force, recalling Alice Munro at her best.
Starred review. These tales are as beautifully patterned as poetry, saturated in feeling, open to ambiguity, and laced with electrifying images.
Relentlessly compassionate, this is a collection for the mistake makers and trying-as-hard-as-we-canners of the world--which probably means all of us.--Book of the Week Pick