The book has the feeling of live performance, never mind a wrong note or two (the dull poems on Donald Trump, for example). Its strength is in its abundance, its desire for language to stir body as well as mind. As the chapters wind back into Sneed’s early years, we realize how hard-won is such rawness on the page. All her earnestness, wonder, rage — the plain innocence of feeling — was denied to her in childhood ... Always, this writer, so haunted by her unknown origins, diligently fills in the silences she can.
Balancing and mixing, with rhyme and reason, love and anger, good and bad, memory and the created present, all to tell the story of a life, a memoir unrestrained, devoid of artificial forms. Honest. Free ... an emancipated book, a book freed from the tyrannies of genre and form.
Vividly capturing an array of formative relationships with friends, lovers, and family from the late 1980s and early ’90s, Sneed’s recalled experiences take the reader from the Boston suburbs and AIDS pandemic-era New York to Cape Coast Castle in Ghana ... In this book, bracing honesty reveals both the necessity and the costs of resilience.