Cover for Wycoff: O Street. Click for larger image

O Street

Powerful stories of a woman caught in the long shadow cast by the love of her mother

The tightly linked stories of Corrina Wycoff’s gripping debut collection follow the life of Elizabeth Dinard. Raised in poverty by a schizophrenic single mother who self-medicates with heroin, Elizabeth experiences a childhood fraught with emotional and financial insecurity, as well as darker exploitations.

Now living a fragmented and desperate adulthood, she continually attempts to outrun her brutal past but proves unable to let go of her love for the charismatic, lawless mother who continues to haunt her. In her struggles as she ages, leaves home, moves through lovers, loses her mother to suicide, and eventually becomes a single mother herself, Elizabeth’s gritty determination to simply survive--to exist--is an enormous, if bittersweet, victory.

"10 stories about a young woman's difficult transition to adulthood after an abusive childhood . . . a straightforward look at pain and renewal."--Publishers Weekly

"Shot through with a painful radiance and level intelligence that keeps you with it every step of the way."--Michael Upchurch, Seattle Times

"Among fictions that try to talk us into a world, O Street distinguishes itself for its ability to find a common means of confession in the close space of reading. The book sings violently and truly. Wycoff's storytelling works the margins of memory and anxiety, in the familial and social spaces of existing in America between 'being diagnosed and being dead.'"--Rain Taxi

"Wycoff portrays the gritty, sorrowful elements of her characters' lives head-on and offers no easy solutions - no one's riding up on a white horse, but neither are the stories bleak. Instead, drama and tension are delivered in such a subtle but detailed infused way that the reader becomes invested in Beth's plight early on in the collection."--Time Out Chicago

"The virtue of the book is the way it deals with topics that have become clichés through characters who aren't clichés. The psychology in O Street is nuanced and feels true."--Stranger

“In O Street, Corrina Wycoff paints a harrowing portrait of familial pain, mental illness, and the sometimes cruel tenacity of love. Hers is a world undone, through which mothers and daughters falter and fall, yet Wycoff never lets us forget the redemptive power these women hold for each other.”--Aimee Liu, author of Cloud Mountain and Flash House

“A deeply moving, deftly told, and keenly insightful tale of a daughter’s love, by turns helpless and heroic, for a mother who has forgotten how to love.”--Alex Shakar, author of The Savage Girl

Corrina Wycoff’s fiction and essays have appeared in Other Voices, New Letters, Coal City Review, The Oregon Quarterly, Brainchild, Out of Line, Golden Handcuffs, and the anthologies Best Essays Northwest and The Clear Cut Future. She holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Oregon, and an MA in English from the University of Illinois, Chicago. She lives with her son in Seattle, Washington, and teaches English and writing at Pierce College.

To order online:
http://www.press.uillinois.edu/books/catalog/63gqd9my9780976717720.html

To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)

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