Product Details

Madville Publishing
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.5 X 0.48 inches | 0.6 pounds

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About the Author

Sue Mell is a writer from Queens, NY. She earned her MFA from Warren Wilson, and was a 2020 BookEnds fellow at SUNY Stony Brook. Her collection of micro essays, Giving Care, won the 2021 Chestnut Review Prose Chapbook Prize, and her collection of short stories, A New Day, was a finalist for the 2021 St. Lawrence Book Award. Other work has appeared in Cleaver Magazine, Hippocampus Magazine, Jellyfish Review, Narrative Magazine and elsewhere. Find her at


If you've ever suffered a loss, if you've ever had to start over, you will find kinship and hope and even joy in Provenance, the story of a widower seeking to salvage his life after moving back to his small hometown in upstate New York. I cannot recall reading a debut novel imbued with such depth of understanding and compassion for its characters, or one that better captures the messy business of living. Sue Mell writes like a dream.

-Will Allison, author of What You Have Left and Long Drive Home


The story is compelling, and the relationships explored here are a study in the dynamics of family and social expectation. It reminded me in ways of novels such as The Shipping News-studies in mood and situation and character. The prose is gentle, swaying, warm, and inviting. It's just plain beautifully written.

-Clay Reynolds, author of Ars Poetica, Monuments, and The Tentmaker


Provenance is a beautifully supple book about the power of renewal and the everyday, small redemptions hiding within families. Sue Mell artfully captures the hold of the past in all its intoxicating, tumbledown glory and sings it to life in the present.

-Dominic Smith, author of The Last Painting of Sara de Vos


This novel taps into the characters' reserves of motivation and strength in service of what we all want: another chance, and what might still be possible when our best efforts fall short.

-Amy Hempel, author of The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel