Spotlight Series Tour: Graywolf Press

Today I am happy to join other readers in celebrating Graywolf Press through The Spotlight Series which focuses on the small, independent presses. You can learn more about the Spotlight Series here; they also have a page of FAQs if you are interested in participating in a tour.

To read reviews for the Graywolf Press series, visit this page and follow the links.

I chose to read a new release by Graywolf Press: I Curse the River of Time by Per Petterson (read my review) which you can find in stores next month. I picked up this book at the BEA in May and was very excited to read it since I loved Petterson’s previous novel Out Stealing Horses (read my review), also published by Graywolf. Check out their entire book list. Readers can also request a copy of the Spring 2010 catalog here.

Graywolf Press has an interesting history, and I was thrilled to see they are a nonprofit organization:

In 1974, Graywolf’s founder Scott Walker embarked on a publishing adventure. Originally working out of a space provided by Copper Canyon Press in Port Townsend, Washington, Graywolf soon moved in to a shop of its own, or rather into Scott’s backyard in a small outbuilding affectionately called the “print shack.”

It was in this small, cramped building that the first books were produced for the reading public. Each book was painstakingly hand-set and hand-printed on treadle-operated machines. After six months of fourteen-hour days, the first full-length poetry book, Instructions to the Double by Tess Gallagher, was given life. The small print run of fifteen hundred copies sold out in four months.

Since then, Graywolf has expanded its list to include novels, short stories, memoirs, essays, as well as poetry, and has discovered and/or promoted such writers as Elizabeth Alexander, Charles Baxter, Sven Birkerts, Linda Gregg, Eamon Grennan, Tony Hoagland, Jane Kenyon, William Kittredge, Carl Phillips, William Stafford, David Treuer, and Brenda Ueland. A commitment to quality, and a willingness to embrace or invent new models, has kept Graywolf at the forefront of the small press movement. Today, Graywolf is considered one of the nation’s leading nonprofit literary publishers.

Read more about Graywolf Press on their website.

Books I am looking forward to which are due for release by Graywolf Press in the coming months:

The Wilding by Benjamin Percy (release date October 2010) – a hunting trip in the woods of Oregon brings a father, son and grandson together where conflict and danger ensue … “shines unexpected light on our shifting relationship with nature and family in contemporary society.”

The Report by Jessica Francis Kane (release date September 2010) – 173 people die in on the step of a London Tube station in 1943 prompting an investigation and report into the tragedy…”a compelling commentary on the way all tragedies are remembered.”

Although Graywolf Press is not new to me, I learned more about them by agreeing to participate in this tour…and I am eager to seek out more of their titles in the future!

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  1. I had wanted to participate in this tour, but had such a hard time finding something that I thought I would like from Graywolf. Now, here I am reading all of these great reviews of books that I know I would probably love. I feel silly. That being said, I do think that this sounds like a great book and I also have been wanting to read Out Stealing Horses for awhile as well. Glad to know that you liked the book. Great review!

    • Serena on July 29, 2010 at 09:29

    I’ve always loved their poetry selections. They’re one of my go-to publishers for poetry.

    • Wendy on August 15, 2010 at 09:20

    Zibilee: Oh, definitely pick up a copy of Out Stealing Horses…loved that book.

    Serena: I’m not a huge poetry reader…but some of their poetry books did look really good.

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