Particulate Matter (Hardcover)

Particulate Matter By Felicia Luna Lemus Cover Image
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In concise and distilled prose, Lemus presents a collection of still lifes, landscapes, and portraits of a challenging year that threatened all she loved most.

“A love story that’s profoundly rooted in the emotional, geographical, and sociopolitical terrain of today . . . Like song lyrics or snapshots, her wisps and fragments of language take on a coded and otherworldly atmosphere, one that conveys wonder and dread almost subliminally . . . Particulate Matter is a moving example of how to write about climate change, not didactically, but with the deep impact of both personal loss and literary elegance.” —NPR Books

“A tiny, powerful flame of a book. Lemus’ writing lands like sparks and ash, fragmented and tinged with grief . . . Particulate Matter is . . . an exploration of the simultaneity of delight, yearning, grief and confusion of being in love with a person and a place. Of being alive at all.” —San Francisco Chronicle

Particulate Matter is the story of a year in Felicia Luna Lemus’s marriage when the world turned upside down. It’s set in Los Angeles, and it’s about love and crisis, loss and grief, the city and the ocean, ancestral ghosts and history haunting. Nature herself seemed to howl. Fires raged and covered the house Lemus and her spouse shared in ash. Everything crystallized. It was the most challenging and terrifying time she had ever experienced, and yet it was also a time when the sublime beauty of the everyday shone through with particular power and presence.

About the Author

FELICIA LUNA LEMUS is the author of Particulate Matter, and the novels Trace Elements of Random Tea Parties and Like Son. Her writing has been anthologized in numerous collections, and has appeared in publications including BOMB, the Believer, ZYZZYVA, and the California Sunday Magazine. Lemus is currently the Visiting Writer at Pitzer College. Sharpie Ultra Fine black markers and crossword puzzles are among her favorite things. She lives in the Los Angeles area with her spouse and their wild one.

Praise For…

There are only a few words per page in Particulate Matter, but that doesn’t actually matter. The words Felicia Luna Lemus does carefully choose serve to paint a brilliant picture of her marriage, of a Los Angeles covered in ash, of dashed hopes and new beginnings.

— Good Morning America

In Lemus’ first foray into nonfiction, the author chronicles a year in her marriage when the whole world turned upside down. Some pages are brief, containing only one or two words, but their emotional weight, and that of the entire book, packs such a punch readers will feel the sensation long after the end.
— Los Angeles Times, 11 books to read during Hispanic Heritage Month

Lemus has a particular talent for engaging the deepest and most complex parts of the self with the simplest turn of phrase. Detailing the toughest year of her life, she uncovers meaning in the ordinary and the terrifying.
— Ms. Magazine

An unforgettable meditation on [Felicia Luna Lemus’s] experiences . . . Lemus bears an unmatched precision of the craft. This succinct mic drop of a personal story begs to be read over and over again.
— Booklist

Particulate Matter is a blessed offering: Felicia Luna Lemus shows us her fierce and generous heart and soul in gorgeous, tender, playful prose. Come tell me that’s hyperbole after you read it.

— Elizabeth Crane, author of Turf
Product Details
ISBN: 9781617758416
ISBN-10: 1617758418
Publisher: Akashic Books, Ltd.
Publication Date: November 3rd, 2020
Pages: 144
Language: English