Celestial Navigation

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Overview

Paulette Jiles's celebrated, multi-award-winning poetry collection. These are poems of scorching intensity, which examine the politics of childhood and love; explore the rigours and blessings of living in the far north; mark the way stations of a life of discovery and exploration. The result is a poetry of singular, telling immediacy.
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Overview

Paulette Jiles's celebrated, multi-award-winning poetry collection. These are poems of scorching intensity, which examine the politics of childhood and love; explore the rigours and blessings of living in the far north; mark the way stations of a life of discovery and exploration. The result is a poetry of singular, telling immediacy.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780771044052
  • Publisher: McClelland & Stewart Ltd.
  • Publication date: 3/23/2004
  • Pages: 136

Meet the Author

Paulette Jiles
Paulette Jiles
Acclaimed journalist, award-winning poet, and New York Times-bestselling novelist, Paulette Jiles is a writer who steeps her prose in the places she's called home, from the Missouri Ozarks to the Texas plains.

Biography

Poet, memoirist, and novelist Paulette Jiles was born and raised in the Missouri Ozarks and moved to Canada in 1969 after graduating with a degree in Romance languages from the University of Missouri at Kansas City. She spent eight years as a journalist in Canada, before turning to writing poetry. In 1984, she won the Governor General's Award (Canada's highest literary honor) for Celestial Navigation, a collection of poems lauded by the Toronto Star as "...fiercely interior and ironic, with images that can mow the reader down."

In 1992, Jiles published Cousins, a beguiling memoir that interweaves adventure and romance into a search for her family roots. Ten years later, she made her fiction debut with Enemy Women (2002), the survival story of an 18-year-old woman caged with the criminally insane in a St. Louis prison during the Civil War. Janet Maslin raved in The New York Times, "This is a book with backbone, written with tough, haunting eloquence by an author determined to capture the immediacy of he heroine's wartime odyssey." The book won the Willa Literary Award for Historical Fiction (U.S.) and the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize (Canada).

In her second novel, 2007's Stormy Weather, Jiles mined another rich trove of American history. Set in Texas oil country during the Great Depression, the story traces the lives of four women, a widow and her three daughters, as they struggle to hold farm and family together in a hardscrabble world of dust storms, despair, and deprivation. In its review, The Washington Post praised the author's lyrical prose, citing descriptions that "crackle with excitement." Stormy Weather became the fourth selection in the Barnes & Noble Recommends program.

A dual citizen of the United States and Canada, Jiles currently lives on a ranch near San Antonio, Texas.

Good To Know

Some interesting outtakes from our interview with Jiles:

"When I lived in Nelson, British Columbia, there were three or four of us women who were struggling writers; we were very poor and we had a great deal of fun. We shared writing and money and wine. Woody (Caroline Woodward) had a great, huge Volkswagen bus -- green -- named Greena Garbo. When any of us managed to publish something there were celebrations. It was a wonderful time. They always managed to show up at my place just when I'd baked bread. One time Meagan and Joanie arrived to share with me a horrible dinner they had made of cracked wheat and onions -- we were actually all short of food. I had just made lasagna -- and they ate all of my lasagna and left me with that vile dish of groats and onions. And then we all got married and went in different directions."

"I have a small ranch that keeps me busy -- two horses, a donkey, a cat, a dog, fences, a pasture -- I and spend lots of time preventing erosion, clearing cedar, etc."

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    1. Hometown:
      Southwest Texas
    1. Education:
      B.A. in Romance Languages, University of Missouri

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2010

    This is one of my favorite poetry books.

    These works have inspired me, moved me, left me gasping for breath -- amazed that anyone could understand as much as Jiles does here.

    Her deep research and love for history shows in some works, her sensitivity to the fleeting nature of things in others, her adventurous spirit in all of them.

    Love it!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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