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Authors: Jeffrey Ethan Lee
The Autobiography of Somebody Else is a lyric novel with a disarmingly direct and graceful style. The hero, a young Asian-American actor follows a trail of vivid, brief memories, presented as episodes. Whether he is surviving a near-fatal overdose, reveling in the broad euphoria of a cast party after a theater production, revealing the deep dysphoria of friendly patients in a mental ward, or pursuing a love that is doomed, the insights are heartbreaking, penetrating and harrowing.
The novel respects the full humanity of many characters and kinds of characters who have often been represented in pop culture as caricatures. This novel deeply explores some social themes such as how psychotropic drug therapies dehumanize people, how minorities are used in pop culture, how the arts can be the saving grace in benighted institutions, and how one must, in the end, return to oneself to find and make peace. So he learns after great struggles, at last, how to be free from the past.
Jeffrey Ethan Lee’s dramatic poetry book, identity papers (Ghost Road Press, 2006), was a 2006 Colorado Book Award finalist. The CD audio version of identity papers (2002) was nominated for a Spoken Word Grammy. His first full-length poetry book, invisible sister (Many Mountains Moving Press, April 2004) is the sequel to towards euphoria, the co-winner of the editor’s poetry chapbook prize from Seven Kitchens Press (2012). He won the 2002 Sow's Ear Poetry Chapbook prize for The Sylf (2003), and published Strangers in a Homeland (chapbook with Ashland Poetry Press, 2001), and hundreds of poems, stories and essays in North American Review, Xconnect, Crab Orchard Review, Crazyhorse, Many Mountains Moving, Crosscurrents, American Poetry Review, Green Mountain Review, Washington Square. He has a Ph.D. in British Romanticism and an MFA from NYU. He teaches in the humanities at Temple University and in Creative Writing at various institutions.
“Jeffrey Ethan Lee’s The Autobiography of Someone Else is what Holden Caulfield might have written if he had loved reading Rimbaud and Samuel Beckett. With mesmerizing language, a searing wit, and memorable characters, much of the action takes place between a theater and a mental ward; between the playhouse and the madhouse, all is serious play and lucid madness. This is a story about hunger and woundedness and love. In the world of this book, the protagonist has many identities: Alec, Cayle, Hat Chet Man, Orpheus. After a recent suicide attempt, he wants to find the truth on a “last dive into the bright end of the kaleidoscope where bits of colored glass may cut you.” Throughout its reflections on psychiatry, poetry, identity, and home, it is mostly a love story “where nobody is ever loved enough to make up for what life is.” But this book is like a beautiful letter that does just that.”
"A writer who gnaws with discontent and the magic of healing it all as best he can. Jeffrey Ethan Lee knows the world in the autobiography that is for all of us. It is his generosity as a writer where that healing hails magic. It’s so amazing. It’s filled with tension and miraculous writing. He holds a place for you with this book, don’t lose the opportunity to read it RIGHT NOW!"
—CAConrad, author of ECODEVIANCE
“The Autobiography of Somebody Else shimmers with urgency and intelligence. As the narrator pieces together his identity, he must search out the ghosts of the past, including those who have left no
forwarding addresses. Along the way, there is hopeless love, poetic lunacy, and ultimately an acceptance of every part of who he is, an acceptance that allows him to outlive his own tragedy and face the rest of his life.”
“Jeffrey Ethan Lee has come upon a new form: the noir autobiography. He brings a poet’s ear and a story teller’s evocative effects. I read his story in one sitting. A compelling and engaging read.”
—Harriet Levin, author of The Christmas Show
|$16.00||150 pages (Original Trade Paperback)||ISBN: 978-1-935210-84-9||2016|