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We hope you had a chance to read the amazing Inferno (A Poet’s Novel) by Eileen Myles, our selection for The Big Something Book Club, and that you’ll make it her reading tonight at Colorado College at 7 p.m. in the Gates Common Room as part of the Colorado College Visiting Writer’s Series.

If you didn’t get a chance to read, you should still come and hear Myles read from her novel and poems and allow yourself to be persuaded to read her books in the process.

Inferno is a bildungsroman, a coming of age story about a young woman named Eileen Myles who moves from her hometown of Arlington, Massachusetts to New York to become a poet. Following the structure of Dante’s Divine Comedy, Myles takes the reader through the Inferno of her early days in Catholic school and into New York, then up through the Purgatorio of finding a way to be a writer of herself in the city, and finally, into the Heaven of being a full-time poet and writer. This book will take you through the gender fun house of her life in a voice as compelling as Salinger’s Holden Caulfield. How can you not love a writer who responds to Philip Roth’s retirement thusly: “I’m happy he’s still alive, and we won’t have to keep hearing about his boring books. It’s very generous of him to stop.”? She’s truly one of the greatest readers we’ve ever heard and we can’t recommend the reading or Inferno (excertp HERE) enough. But don’t take our word for it; take Alison Bechdel’s:

“I was completely stupefied by Inferno in the best of ways. In fact, I think I must feel kind of like Dante felt after seeing the face of God. My descriptive capacity just fails, gives way completely. But I can tell you that Eileen Myles made me understand something I didn’t before. And really, what more can you ask of a novel, or a poet’s novel, or a poem, or a memoir, or whatever the hell this shimmering document is? Just read it.”

Or watch this video (and ignore the annoying production):


See you there!


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