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The More I Owe You

A Novel

List Price: $15.95

May 25, 2010 | Paperback | 5-1/2 x 8-1/4, 320 pages | ISBN 9781582435763
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The author of the acclaimed memoir Mother and Son creates an intimate portrait of poet Elizabeth Bishop in this “sensitive and engrossing” debut novel (Publishers Weekly).

“A portrait of the artist as a human—a woman of desire, contradiction, and need.” —A. M. Homes, author of The Mistress’s Daughter Artfully drawing from Elizabeth Bishop’s lifelong correspondences and biography, The More I Owe You explores the modernist poet’s intensely private world, including her life in Brazil and her relationship with her lover, the dazzling, aristocratic Lota de Macedo Soares.

Despite their seemingly idyllic existence in Soares’s glass house in the jungle, Bishop’s lifelong battle with alcoholism rises to the surface. And as the sensuous landscape of Rio de Janeiro, the rhythms of the samba and the bossa nova, and the political turmoil of 1950’s Brazil envelop Bishop, she enters a world she never expected to inhabit . . . A vivid imagining of the tumultuous relationship between two brilliant and artistic women, The More I Owe You reveals Elizabeth Bishop to be a literary genius who lived in conflict with herself, both as a writer and as a woman.

“Real–life poet Elizabeth Bishop is vividly and imaginatively portrayed in Sledge’s debut novel. . . . Strong and intoxicating.” —Booklist

“A gorgeous meditation on enduring love, damage, and what it can be to be happy, for however brief a moment. Bravo, bravo, bravo.” —Stacey D’Erasmo, author of The Sky Below

“A beautiful dream of a book. Sumptuously detailed, deeply felt, it is as if Sledge slipped back in time and walked every step with Elizabeth Bishop, breathed every breath with her.” —Alison Smith, author of Name All the Animals

About Michael Sledge

Michael Sledge is the author of a memoir, Mother and Son, and has contributed to a number of literary journals. He is co-founder of the Oaxifornia arts studio in Oaxaca, Mexico, and lives in both Mexico and Oakland, California. This is his first novel.

Praise
Praise for The More I Owe You

"A novel of extraordinary beauty, intimacy, and such consummate tenderness for its complex Elizabeth that one wonders how Sledge managed to slide so close to her soul. A gorgeous meditation on enduring love, damage, and what it can be to be happy, for however brief a moment. Bravo, bravo, bravo." —Stacey D'Erasmo, author of The Sky Below

"A beautiful dream of a book. Sumptuously detailed, deeply felt, it is as if Sledge slipped back in time and walked every step with Elizabeth Bishop, breathed every breath with her." —Alison Smith, author of Name All the Animals

Praise for Mother and Son

"[A] sensitive account." —Publishers Weekly

"This book manages to be intimate and completely honest without being sentimental or self–indulgent. One of the finest examples of memoir I've ever read." —Chad LeJeune, author of The Worry Trap

"Such affecting prose stays with us long after book's end." —The San Francisco Chronicle

"Michael Sledge has created unforgettable scenes . . . he has been honest enough to allow us to see how a tiny aberration can spin a life into patterns no one dreamed of." —The New York Times Book Review

"A courageous endeavor." —San Francisco Focus Magazine

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