Described by Darin Strauss as “Nick Flynn meets Karl Ove Knausgard” and “a book of relentless compassion” Songs Only You Know—Sean Madigan Hoen’s debut—is an intense, sprawling memoir equal parts family tragedy and punk rock road trip.
Songs Only You Know begins in late ‘90s Detroit and spans a decade during which a family fights to hold together in the face of insurmountable odds. Sean’s father cycles from rehab to binge, his heartsick sister spirals into depression, and his mother works to spare what can be spared. Meanwhile, Sean seeks salvation in a community of eccentrics and outsiders, making music Spin magazine once referred to as “an art-core mindfuck.” But the closer Sean comes to realizing his musical dream, the further he drifts from his family and himself.
By turns heartbreaking and mordantly funny, Songs Only You Know is an artful, compassionate rendering of the chaos and misadventure of a young man’s life.
“Few books convey the fever-pitch intensity of youth with such vividness and so little glamorization, or as deeply explore the heartbreaking complexity of family — both those we're born into and the ones we choose.” —Rolling Stone Magazine
From the Hardcover edition.