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On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous
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The debut novel from the best-selling, prize-winning prodigy

About the Author

Ocean Vuong was a Ruth Lilly fellow and winner of a Pushcart Prize, and has received honours and awards from Poets House and the Academy of American Poets. Night Sky with Exit Wounds won the 2016 Whiting Award in the States, and the 2017 Forward Prize for Best First Collection and the T.S. Eliot Prize in the UK. He teaches at Amherst College, Massachusetts.

Reviews

"Vuong is masterly at creating indelible, impressionistic images... This is some of the most moving writing I've read about two boys experimenting together... The tenderness of the prose feels like a triumph against a world hellbent on embittering the tenderhearted... the truths arrived at in this book are valuable precisely because they are steeped in feeling." * New York Times *
"Vuong is surely a literary descendant of the author of Leaves of Grass. Emerging from the most marginalized circumstances, he has produced a lyrical work of self-discovery that's shockingly intimate and insistently universal... Not so much briefly gorgeous as permanently stunning." -- Ron Charles * Washington Post *
"Vuong as a writer is daring. He goes where the hurt is, creating a novel saturated with yearning and ache... He transforms the emotional, the visceral, the individual into the political in an unforgettable - indeed, gorgeous - novel." * Time Magazine *
"Vuong's material is gripping even in precis... Vuong's determination to see well-trodden ground afresh, with unremitting complexity, is extremely rare.... In these authenticity-hungry times, Vuong could have let his sensational biography simply "speak for itself". There is a great deal to admire: that he was able to give such personal material novelistic treatment; that he had the patience to wait until that was possible; that he only had wait until he was 30... [an] exciting talent." * Sunday Times *
"Vuong is a mightily gifted observer... Some lines have the almost hallucinatory exactness of his best poems... moving and rarely less than excellent... [On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is] unleashed in every regard." -- Dwight Garner * New York Times *
"[Vuong] mines his extraordinary family story with passion and beauty... Vuong writes wonderfully." * Guardian *
"This is a stunning, sensuous novel that paints a portrait of a mother and her child struggling to work out how to live in a new land. There is fear and anger but the boy's love for his mother - and for the world that surrounds him - sings off the page." * Monocle *
"Utterly captivating writing." * Daily Mail *
"One of American's most noteworthy poets. His poems are beautiful and unpredictable, and the same goes for this, his debut novel... brilliantly raw." * Sunday Times *
"On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous is a masterpiece: a staggeringly beautiful book, full of wisdom and pain. It seems obvious now, though it didn't before, that a young gay poet born in Saigon would write the Great American Novel. I really think it's that. A huge gift to the world." -- Max Porter

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