Publication Date: September 19, 2023
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From bestselling author of The Book of Delights and award-winning poet Ross Gay, a fresh new volume of lyrical mini-essays celebrating the everyday that will inspire readers to rediscover the joys in the world around us.
The author of the New York Times bestselling The Book of Delights is back with Volume II. In this spirited second collection of short, lyrical, genre-defying essays, again written daily over a year, one of America’s most original and observant voices celebrates the ordinary, helping us see our extraordinary world anew. Delights: Book II is a record of the small wonders we so often overlook in our busy lives. Among Gay’s funny, poetic, philosophical delights: bonding with a pipsqueak of a puppy, observing how his mother bakes 18 kinds of cookies before her grandchildren arrive, the tenderness he feels when he sees an adult wearing braces, or even the acknowledgment that often for him the preamble is more delightful than the thing itself: “putting on your socks and tying up your shoes, and, if you’re the type, filling up your water bottle and doing some light stretching, but skipping the walk entirely.”
In essays that can be at once intimate and political, Gay shows us why he has made the subject as Black joy his own. Even as he practices delight, he doesn’t shy away from complexities of racism in America or the ecological and psychic violence of our consumer culture or the loss of those he loves. More than anything else, though, Gay reveals the beauty of the natural world—the garden, the orchard, the flowers emerging from cracks in the sidewalk, the elegant movements of geese tending to their goslings, and the trillion mysteries of this glorious earth.
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