Dear Damage (Paperback)
Two weeks before her grandfather purchased a gun, Ashley Marie Farmer's grandmother tripped as she walked across their living room. It was a swift accident on an ordinary day: her chin hit the floor; her cervical spine shattered. She asked, "I'm paralyzed, aren't I?" Later, thinking to put her out of her misery, he kissed his sleeping wife of sixty-three years and shot her in the chest. He tried to shoot himself too, but the weapon broke apart in his hands. He was immediately arrested. This is the scene we are greeted with at the outset of Farmer's stunning collection of hybrid essays. One of its greatest features is the variety of voices, a kaleidoscopic approach that corrals in autobiography, audio transcripts, media, legal documents, internet comments, short prose pieces, and more. The result is a moving, deeply satisfying, and eye-opening story. Ashley Marie Farmer is a profound writer who is clearly here to stay, her voice a true gift to our times.