The House Enters the Street

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9780983740513: The House Enters the Street
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"The House Enters the Street is beautifully written, confident, and complex. I was appreciative of its language and intelligence, mindfulness and scope."—Rikki Ducornet

"A demanding and beautiful book, which tracks an exacting landscape with breathtaking inventiveness."—Mary Gordon

"A startling and lovely configuration of stories, endlessly echoing and reverberating, haunted and haunting. Gretchen E. Henderson creates a sublime and mysterious music all her own."—Carole Maso

It was all about the fruits of labors, not only on land: at sea. Faar's life began at sea. Waves rolled outside his window, where he watched watery horizons. His father had disappeared on a voyage to terra incognita, where horned narwhales swam under ice, where profit lulled into frozen floes. The young Faar began to dream of cloud lagoons, bellied sails, and wind. The wayfaring trait had been inherited. He decided to wander.

Cousins on the other side of the world sent him a letter to marry their eldest daughter: S-v-a-n H-a-r-d-t. I-o-w-a, they wrote, without mentioning the distance between bordering seas. Faar assumed oceans existed near their home. He was young, then.

This beautiful novel is simultaneously a love letter to the arts and a complex interweaving of characters, stories, and landscapes. Scandinavian immigrants in Iowa migrate towards war. A photographer in Arkansas returns to California to repair her family after a devastating fire. Stories unfold, modulating and resonating. This intricate, moving book reminds us of the art a novel can be.

Gretchen E. Henderson is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Writing and Humanistic Studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Working at the intersection of literature, art history, museum studies, disability studies, and music, her creative and critical work explores aesthetics of deformity, museology as narrative strategy, poetics of embodiment, and literary appropriations of music. Her writing has appeared in a number of journals and anthologies, including The Kenyon Review, The Iowa Review, The Sourthern Review, and The &NOW Awards: The Best Innovative Writing. Her first novel Galerie de Difformité was awarded the 2011 Madeleine P. Plonskar Emerging Writer's Prize from &NOW Books. Other works include a critical study of literary appropriations of music, On Marvellous Things Heard (Green Lantern Press), and a poetry chapbook engaging cartographic history, Wreckage: By Land & By Sea (Dancing Girl Press). At MIT, she is working on Ugliness: A Cultural History while continuing the collaborative deformation of her Galerie de Difformité. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


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About the Author:

Gretchen E. Henderson is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Writing and Humanistic Studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Working at the intersection of literature, art history, museum studies, disability studies, and music, her creative and critical work explores aesthetics of deformity, museology as narrative strategy, poetics of embodiment, and literary appropriations of music. Her writings have appeared in a number of journals and anthologies (The Kenyon Review, The Iowa Review, The Southern Review, The &NOW Awards: The Best Innovative Writing) and her first novel, Galerie de Difformité, was awarded the 2011 Madeleine P. Plonsker Emerging Writer’s Prize from &NOW Books. Other works include a critical study of literary appropriations of music, On Marvellous Things Heard (Green Lantern Press) and a poetry chapbook engaging cartographic history, Wreckage: By Land & By Sea (Dancing Girl Press). At MIT, she is working on Ugliness: A Cultural History, while continuing the collaborative deformation of her Galerie de Difformité, which invites participation at: difformite.wordpress.com. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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