176 pages, 5 1/2 x 8
Release Date:01 Mar 2018



University of New Mexico Press

Winner of the 2020 Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award for Creative Non-fiction
Longlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay
2019 Lambda Literary Award Finalist for Lesbian Memoir/Biography
Silver Winner for Essays in 2018 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards

This is a book about ownership. It begins with an essay about being given a man's furniture while he's on trial for murder and follows with essays that question corporeal, familial, and intellectual forms of ownership. What does it mean to believe that a hand, or a child, or a country, or a story belongs to you? What happens if you realize you're wrong? Mining her own life and those of others, Sarah Viren considers the contingencies of ownership alongside the realities of loss in this debut essay collection.

Deeply inquisitive and probing, generous and judicious, Sarah Viren's MINE is a series of meditations, memories buoyed to the surface by love and loss and wonder. She transforms and illuminates the world as she mines it.'--2020 Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award for Creative Non-fiction
The essays in this book go down easy as a cold drink on a hot day, yet speak to complex emotional truths that might, poured out by less agile writers, be difficult to swallow. This simplification of the obtuse, this clear, clean writing, these are admirable traits shared by writers who, like Viren, cut their teeth working in newspapers before switching to books. Think Mark Twain, Isabel Allende. And, no, it is not exaggeration to consider adding Viren to that crowd.'--Weekly Alibi
At times it feels that Viren is offering her readers the empirical results of an experiment in human curiosity that resists all exploitation and relies wholly on generosity.'--The Iowa Review
Viren's essays do what the best nonfiction does: they transform the story that is hers into a story that becomes all of ours.'--River Teeth: A Journal of Nonfiction Narrative
With wonderfully precise and evocative prose, Sarah Viren takes us deeply into her search for her very self. . . . MINE is not only moving, it is instructive and nourishing in a way that only art can deliver. This book is a gem.'--Andre Dubus III, author of House of Sand and Fog
Sarah Viren is a writer of extraordinary wisdom and grace. . . . I am always taken aback, in the end, when her essays--cunningly, imperceptibly--gather within themselves such stunning emotional power.'--Kerry Howley, author of Thrown
Ultimately a book about belonging, this nimble, beautiful collection helps us better understand 'what we call ours but is never really ours to begin with.''--Ryan Van Meter, author of If You Knew Then What I Know Now
Sarah Viren is a writer, translator, and former newspaper reporter. A graduate of the University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program, she teaches at Arizona State University.

My Murderer's Futon
My Catch
My Choice
My Hands
My Namesake
My Narrative Transformation
My Language
My Wife
My Possum
My Ballad for You
My Story
My Child
My Return


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