New American Best Friend by Olivia GatwoodNew American Best Friend by Olivia Gatwood

New American Best Friend

byOlivia Gatwood

Paperback | March 28, 2017

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One of the most recognizable young poets in America, Olivia Gatwood dazzles with her tribute to contemporary American womanhood in her debut book, New American Best Friend. Gatwood's poems deftly deconstruct traditional stereotypes. The focus shifts from childhood to adulthood, gender to sexuality, violence to joy. And always and inexorably, the book moves toward celebration, culminating in a series of odes: odes to the body, to tough women, to embracing your own journey in all its failures and triumphs.
Title:New American Best FriendFormat:PaperbackDimensions:60 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.16 inPublished:March 28, 2017Publisher:Button PoetryLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1943735107

ISBN - 13:9781943735105


Read from the Book

the boys and i are playing quarters with double shots of vodka and i am winning. by winning imean i am not one of the boys but i am the next best thing. by the next best thing i mean i am agirl and i am drunk. every time i miss a shot, johnny gets to flick a quarter against my knucklesand now my knuckles are bleeding onto my thighs but every time i make a shot i get to knockback a throat full of liquor. i slam down the glass until it cracks up the side and now the game isabout who will still drink from it, who will risk shards in the belly, who will cut up their insidesfor a pack of newports and it's not that i even want the cigarettes, it's just that i am not afraid ofblood which is also part of being a girl. but being the only girl means making yourself lose whenyou've won too much so i bounce the coin off the rim of the shot glass and let johnny slice meopen. in thirty minutes, johnny is dragging me out of the bathroom by my wrists and i can hearhim saying something about blood on the carpet, about a drunk girl in the house who is stainingeverything and i think that means i must be the champion of quarters. johnny is the kind of guywho sleeps with a gun, not women. but johnny is always the one inviting me over for a game ofquarters and sometimes i wonder if this is how johnny fucks. like maybe he is the kind of manwho only screams when he is underwater or lets me feel how strong his fingers are without actuallytouching me. maybe that's why we're all here, even the boys, to let johnny hold us like abarred window. i work a double one day a week and on this day, don't answer johnny's call. byone day a week i mean two men break in and shoot johnny in the temple for two-thousand pillsand i am scraping pasta from a business man's plate into the trash. at some point i'll tell you whyi didn't go to the wake. i guess i never really knew johnny like that. by that i mean sober or in achurch. when i say i didn't go to the wake i mean i drove by his house everyday for two yearsand the for sale sign never got taken down like the house would always be johnny's, like maybethe whole town knew what happened there. like maybe no one could get rid of the blood.

Editorial Reviews

"In New American Best Friend, Olivia Gatwood slices with a sharp, keen humor into the beguiling and calamitous experience of American adolescence and young adulthood." -Carrie Fountain, author of Burn Lake