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The primary mission of the Fleur-de-Lis Press is to publish first
books of authors who have appeared in The Louisville Review.
The press currently has fourteen such books in print, described below.
Other books by Fleur-de-Lis are High Horse: Contemporary Writing
by the MFA Faculty of Spalding University; Place Gives Rise to
Spirit: Writers on Louisville, a book of essays and photographs
about Louisville, and You Are Not Here by David Jauss,
the winner of the 2002 Fleur-de-Lis Poetry Contest.
To order, send the appropriate amount for each book
c/o The Louisville Review
851 South Fourth Street
Louisville KY 40203
You can also call us at 502-873-4398
or reach us through email at email@example.com.
or fax us at 502-992-2409
Seeking the Other Side
Poems by Jane Olmsted (2012)
"Never have words made pain more real nor death more absurd than in these existential, mystical poems by Jane Olmsted. This work will shine when all our eyes are closed because that is what happens when language arrives at Truth. These poems are rare and true and beautiful. Treasure them."
–Sena Jeter Naslund, Editor, Fleur-de-Lis Press
I know this hole, but how?/I have to kneel to look through," writes Jane Olmsted in her powerful collection, Seeking the Other Side. The "hole" quoted refers to the literal cavity that has caught her attention, yet Olmsted's looking at the negative space of a great loss, too—a loss that must be lived with, if not understood. This poet ruptures the cliche, asking "Would the glass remain half-full if a fist/ripped out the heart and settled/into that slippery absence?" There are no answers metaphor or pathetic fallacy can provide, only more thoughtfully shaped questioning, "habits of noticing," "strange pronunciations/of familiar places." Poems about memory, loss, and the self's adjustments are collected with poems about trees and the forms of trees, which provide arms and roots to what feels devastatingly vacant. In life as in thought, "there is cavity involved," yet, as this poet makes beautifully clear, there is form and shape and listening: "if you have no answer,/ go then to the lonely place—/I will meet you there.
–Lisa Williams, author of Gazelle in the House.
The Woman of La Mancha
by Karen Mann (2014)
A rip-roaring, thumping good story, set in the time and place that gave birth to Don Quixote. Faithful to the spirit of those times and driven by a lively and beguiling central character, The Woman of La Mancha brings us the full sweep of human capability: generosity and tenderness, hope and persistence, brutality and treachery. Steeped in medieval roots, this tale poses modern questions about men and women: the suffering that springs from perversity and violation, the longing and loneliness that accompany young adulthood, and the rare and joyful flourishing of reciprocal love. This book will inspire and warm your heart.
–Eleanor Morse, author of White Dog Fell from the Sky and Chopin's Garden
Karen Mann’s take-off on Don Quixote is a marvelous creation all its own. While remaining faithful to the spirit and style of Cervantes’ masterpiece, Mann turns the narrative on its head. This Dulcinea—only one of her guises—is not only an object of romantic obsession, but also a picaresque figure in her own right, adventuring, learning, and loving in a perilous but enchanting world. Read The Woman of La Mancha to journey with this colorful heroine and others by way of a wondrous, delightful tale.
–Roy Hoffman, author of the novels Chicken Dreaming Corn and Come Landfall
The reader doesn’t have to be a Don Quixote scholar to enjoy—to love!—Karen Mann’s ingenious re-imagining of Cervantes’ classic. The Woman of La Mancha is a funny, lusty, and epic picaresque that examines identity, secret selves, and the ways in which our lives, often unwittingly, intertwine with history and shape the destinies of others. A provocative, rollicking novel.
–K. L. Cook, author of Love Songs for the Quarantined and The Girl from Charnelle
City of Brotherly Love
by Ned Bachus (2012)
Bachus's marvelous collection is more than just a portrait of Philadelphia. He approaches his city from so many directions, and his characters encompass so many layers of experience, that it is easy to forget that these were all the product of a single imagination. These are wise stories, beautifully crafted and full of heart.
-Simone Zelitch, author of Louisa.
In City of Brotherly Love, Ned Bachus takes us to a place that gives as much as it takes, with contemporary characters as rich as Philadelphia's history. Bakers, waitresses, pharmaceutical reps, and bass playing plumbers show us, not just what it’s like to be a Philadelphian, but what it means to be human. Bachus's writing perfectly captures the intricacies and contradictions of a city in search of itself. The stories in City of Brotherly Love create their own kind of beauty that, like the place they call home, is impossible to resist.
–Nate House, author of Float.
by Daly Walker (2011)
This is among the best collections of stories I've encountered over the last decade or so--fiercely dramatic, immaculately composed, and so moving that even the most hardened heart must tremble. Treat yourself to the great beauty of Surgeon Stories
-Tim O'Brien, author of The Things We Carry
and July, July
With an insider's view of the medical profession, Daly Walker writes engaging stories, which often reveal their doctor-protagonists to be just as flawed and human as their patients. The result is an eye- opening collection of stories. --Billy Collins
The Ice Margin
by Marcia Dalton (2010)
Marcia Dalton is a compelling storyteller and a perceptive chronicler of the human heart. She takes what, in the hands of a lesser writer, could easily become a “Cape Cod romance novel” and instead shapes it into a thoroughly satisfying and original work of art. Her evocation of the Cape landscape is the best I have read in years. In her skillful weaving of the ordinary and the transcendent, she convinces us that this is, in fact, the way we live. There is much wisdom and pleasure in this book.
-Robert Finch, author of Death of a Hornet
and Other Cape Cod Stories
and editor of A Place Apart: A Cape Cod Reader
The Ice Margin is the story of Anna, a woman on the verge of quiet yet total change. A surgical accident to her older daughter has shattered Anna’s life, leaving her with a daughter with a paralyzed body and a pre-school mind. Shunned by city friends who don’t know how to help or don’t want to for long, Anna falls in love with a home she’s unexpectedly acquired from her husband’s side of the family. In the wild beauty of Cape Cod, Anna finds herself relishing solitude, unconventional friendships, a rich inner life. Whether she will actually allow herself to live the life she wants or slide back into a cold, unforgiving marriage haunts the pages of this riveting, beautiful novel. Her voice as gentle and natural as that of a friend, yet spiced with penetrating insight and gorgeous descriptions of place, Marcia Dalton is stimulating, comforting and irresistible to read.
-Julie Brickman, author of What Birds Can Only Whisper
by Nancy Jensen(2009)
What is a window but a twoway device to relieve the opacity
of a wall? Nancy Jensen's stories and essays allow readers
to see into the rooms of her mind. Flung wide open, these
pieces even serve as doors through which we can step inside,
turn, and look out with the author at previously unviewed
vistas. Whether looking inward or outward, Jensen's prose
Like some windows, Jensen's book also serves as a mirror
wherein our own features are reflected: how we struggle
to define ourselves within our families, to inhabit our
own bodies, to be known for who we are, to learn what we
need about the illusions and insights, the generosity and
selfishness of ourselves and others.
The words in Window are also those of a survivor and an
explorer. Jensen has the honesty to confront what is difficult
and cruel in the circumstances the world deals and in the
viruses and hungers we harbor within. She has the courage
to explore the unconventional whether the path leads to
Asia, to Europe, or to the dark realm beyond the rational.
Readers will find Nancy Jensen's essays and stories invigorating,
surprising, sometimes frightening, occasionally amusing,
-Sena Jeter Naslund, Editor, Fleur-de-Lis
a book of stories by Jody Lisberger (2008)
"Like the best of Anne Tyler, Jody Lisberger's stories
mine the complicated private truths of seemingly comfortable
American families with compassion, insight, and, above all,
Joan Leegant, author of An Hour
Jody Lisberger gives us love stories for grown-upssharply
written tales that reveal the emotional trapdoors... humor,
cruelty, and resiliency of mature love."
K. L. Cook, author of The Girl
Jody Lisberger's provocatively titled story collection
will make readers wonder just how and when they should remember
love.' Not only the human content but the aesthetic of these
accomplished stories make them worthy of profound attention.
-Sena Jeter Naslund, Editor, Fleur-de-Lis
The Moon with the Sun in Her Eye
a book of poems by Nana Lampton (2007)
In The Moon with the Sun in Her
Eye, Nana Lampton boldly explores the tension between
the feminine moon and the masculine sun. Using the dual
lenses of metaphor and image, she asks all of us, Why can't
we see more clearly? and then shows us how. Through the
moony imagination, we can apprehend the invisible and feel
compassion beyond our usual limits.
Nana Lampton's poems respond to our local, global, and cosmic
situations. Hers is an inclusive aesthetic, one that places
what it is to be a human alive in our time among the plants,
animals, rivers, mountains, continents, and cultures of
With a mythic embodiment who might have leapt from the brain
of William Blake, Nana's Potain Sieblung gives us a female
figure both powerful and vulnerable, penetrant in her honest
insights, bold enough to go where she needs to go, and brave
enough to sweep us stunned gawkers along in her wake. Thanks
be, for Nana Lampton's book of poems!
-Sena Jeter Naslund, Editor
a novel by Kay Gill (2006)
is the haunting story of a young girl who loses her family
death by death in the pogrom massacres of Ukrainian Russia.
In beautiful, vivid language, Kay Gill pieces together a
story woven from fragments of her grandmother's history
and the archives of history. Her discovery of how one intrepid
mother taught her daughter the spirit of survival-that people
are good if they are given the chance, is a tale that reads
almost like a legend. Set historically just after WWI, when
the Germans were withdrawing, the Communist revolution beginning
and gangs of nationalist and tsarist 'bandits' rampaging
through Jewish villages, Gill skillfully chronicles what
it was like for the Jews of the Ukraine as they endured
the prototype of the ethnic extermination to come. A valuable
addition to the great witness literature of the twentieth
century, Mirel's Daughter is a testament to the human
spirit, for it shows how dehumanization and torture ultimately
fail to stamp out the will to love and prevail.
author of What Birds Can Only Whisper
The Triangle Pose
a novel by Mary Welp (2005)
Mary Welp has not forgotten that
literature started out as entertainment, and The Triangle
Pose is a stunner, paced by dancing prose, quick wit, and
characters who consistently
surprise the reader. Yet it is held together by utmost seriousness:
a woman on her own dealing with the way we live now. In
The Triangle Pose, I found a charming story, one that is
still with me.
Our Napoleon in Rags
Among the multiple pleasures of The Triangle Pose are a biting
wit, a sharp eye and a smooth, engaging narrative, but larger than all of
these are its characters: Anna Wallace, tart-tongued new mother and wavering
wife, Jasper Clayquot, infuriatingly stubborn conservative political writer
who is also Anna's surprisingly tender suitor, their spouses, friends and
relatives. No matter how briefly on the page, even the minor characters are
full-blooded, and Anna and Jasper, as they flirt with each other and
disaster, come to seem not people we've read about, but ones we've lived
High Horse: Contemporary Writing by the MFA Faculty of Spalding University (out of print)
Sena Jeter Naslund & Kathleen Driskell, eds. (2005)
From all over the United States and several foreign
countries, both students and faculty come to Spalding University's
brief-residency MFA in Writing Program to study the writing
of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, writing for children,
and playwriting & screenwriting. We invite you to enjoy
the work of the Spalding faculty presented in the pages
of High Horse.
It Was the Goodness of the Place
by Lucinda Dixon Sullivan (2003)
It Was The Goodness of the Place shimmers
along humanity's fault lines with unerring wisdom, clarity,
and grace. Lucinda Dixon Sullivan casts a steady, sure light
onto the souls of her characters, revealing hardscrabble patches
of pure terror but also verdant landscapes seeded with hope,
decency, and redemption. This is a stunning debut.
-Connie May Fowler
When Katie Wakes and Before Women Had Wings
Lucinda Dixon Sullivan captures the time and place of this
novel so brilliantly that I felt as if I had stepped back
to mid-century and found a fully realized town called Milan,
Kentucky. The plot never loosens its grip and the language
is beautiful, tight and graceful. It Was the Goodness
of the Place is a completely wonderful novel and Lucinda
Dixon Sullivan is a stunning new voice.
A Parchment of Leaves
You Are Not Here by
(2002), $10.00 (out of print)
Winner of the 2002 Fleur-de-Lis Poetry Contest
David Jauss's book of "night thoughts"
is a meditation on mortality, and on the ways we transform
the pain of our brevity into art. At the heart of You Are
Not Here is a fierce elegaic sequence remembering a brilliant
poet, Lynda Hull. Hers is a grievous, particular loss, but
as any deep grief seems to do, it draws all losses unto itself,
until the poem becomes what real elegies are: both a lamentation
and a search for a way to move forward in a world where "without
words there can be no return."
In the central elegy of this powerful and moving
book, David Jauss finds a way of expressing and transcending
his grief for the death of his friend and former student,
the poet Lynda Hull, through the severe discipline of jazz
improvisation, retelling and magnificently reinventing the
great myths of hell. Compassion, humor, restless intelligence,
and flawless technique come together brilliantly in You
Are Not Here to create poems of real tenderness and classical
||Laughing Sickness: Poems by Kathleen Driskell
(1999), reprint 2005
Love poems, story
poems, poems happy and sad and angry: Kathleen Driskell moves
as gracefully from lyric to narrative, from mood to mood,
as an attentive mother guarding her children's sleep. There
is a calm vibrancy to this book; even its darkest pages pulse
with compassion. Kathleen Driskell is a wonder. So is Laughing
The Real, True Angel: Stories by Robin Lippincott
has a particular knack for the shorthand dialogue that develops
between people who have been together for a long time, and
he portrays the complicated bonds between friends and lovers
without sentimentalizing them. . . . The Real, True Angel
delivers many . . . tenderly molded flashes of truth.
-Lisa Jennifer Selzman,
In The Real,
True Angel, Robin Lippincott displays sensuous virtuosity,
erotic lyricism, and a language lushly textured, hauntingly
precise. His stories are unflinchingly honest and aesthetically
arresting; they enter lives at that threshold place where
beauty and terror intersect, where flesh and spirit couple,
each the fated shadow of the other.
The New York Times Book Review
The Instinct for Bliss
Silk Weather: Poems by Alan Naslund (1999)
In Silk Weather, Alan Naslund charms with
his craft but terrifies with his honesty. His graceful, almost
courtly love sonnets contrast so strikingly with his bleak,
contemporary meditations on loss and failure and compromise-meditations
that will echo deeply for readers past their youth-that there
seem to be two different sensibilities at work. But no, there's
only one-a sensibility that powerfully unifies life experience
and turns it into art.
In Search of the Great Dead
||Staying Found by Martha Christina
(1997, out of print)
in Staying Found draw parallels and establish connections
between two families--the one in which the poet was a child
and the one in which she is a wife and mother. The voice
is clear, unflinching, and mature; this is a solid first
Connecting the Dots
Place Gives Rise to Spirit: Writers on Louisville
A book of essays by Louisville writers in celebration
of Louisville. Includes essays by Bob Edwards, Lee Pennington,
Sena Jeter Naslund, James Bickers, Grady Clay, Jerry Lee Rodgers,
Dianne Aprile, Wade Hall, Maureen Morehead, Mary Lou Northern,
Richard Taylor, Frederick Smock, and others. A photograph
accompanies each essay. Photos by Thomas R. Oates, Sue Terry
Driskell, David Garrison, Michael A. Fitch and Chris Higdon.
Cover art by Robert Stagg. The proceeds from the sale of this
book go to help the Kentucky Writers
Please send the appropriate amount for each book,
c/o The Louisville Review
851 South Fourth Street
Louisville KY 40203
Or call us at 502-873-4398
or reach us through email
Or fax 502-992-2409
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