The 27th Letter

The Twenty-Seventh Letter of the Alphabet
a memoir
U. of Nebraska Press, expected publication date: September 2018

Growing up in the New Jersey suburbs in the 1970’s and ’80’s, Kim Adrian spent her childhood trudging through a fog of confusion and ducking for cover. With an alcoholic father who erupted into terrifying acts of rage, and a suicidal mother hooked on prescription drugs, experience was buried even as it unfolded, and truth was obscured by lies and fantasies. In The Twenty-Seventh Letter of the Alphabet, Adrian explores the mechanics of memory in this family haunted by mental illness, addiction, and incest by gathering together descriptions of old photographs, bits of family lore, memories and fragile half-memories, and arranging them all in the form of a glossary—neatly catalogued and cross-referenced. But within this strategic reckoning of the past, the unruly present carves an unpredictable path as Adrian's mother, now approaching old age, plunges into ever deeper and increasingly dangerous realms of drug-fueled paranoia.


 Read a Pushcart Prize nominated excerpt of The Twenty-Seventh Letter of the Alphabet in Agni magazine..
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