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Late in the evening of December 13, 2007, Andrea Actis found her father, Jeff, facedown dead in her East Vancouver apartment. So began her passage through grief, self-reckoning, and graduate school in Providence, Rhode Island, where the poetics she studied (and sometimes repudiated) became integral to her gradual reconstruction of wholeness. An assemblage of “evidence” rec Late in the evening of December 13, 2007, Andrea Actis found her father, Jeff, facedown dead in her East Vancouver apartment. So began her passage through grief, self-reckoning, and graduate school in Providence, Rhode Island, where the poetics she studied (and sometimes repudiated) became integral to her gradual reconstruction of wholeness. An assemblage of “evidence” recovered from emails about paranormal encounters sent and received by Jeff ([email protected]), junk mail from false prophets, an annotated excerpt from Laura (Riding) Jackson’s “The Serious Angels: A True Story,” and transcripts of Actis’ dreams, conversations, and messages to the dead, Grey All Over not only celebrates a rare, close, complicated father-daughter bond, it also boldly expands the empathetic and critical capacities of poetry itself. In pulling us outside the comfort zones of received aesthetics and social norms, Actis asks us to embrace with whole seriousness “the pragmatics of intuition” in all the ways we read, live, and love. “When a loved one dies, there’s all this stuff to deal with, and in the midst of grief we begin to collect, sort, document, store, and discard. Andrea Actis has taken the stuff surrounding her father’s death and created a book that is, like grief, in turns heartbreaking, wise, chaotic, drunk, wry, and always unflinchingly honest. This powerful testament of survival is for anyone who has felt the ‘déjà vu in reverse’ of grief. It is for the living.”— Sachiko Murakami “Love letter, experimental poem, meditation, conversation with the dead—Andrea Actis’s compelling debut is unlike any memoir I’ve ever read. In one passage, Actis digs out the biggest piece of bone she can find in the vessel of her father’s ashes and gently bites on it. Reading Grey All Over I had a similar sensation. Ash. Bone. Love.”— Jen Currin “This absolutely beautiful work makes plain that seriousness feels like love.”— Aisha Sasha John


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Late in the evening of December 13, 2007, Andrea Actis found her father, Jeff, facedown dead in her East Vancouver apartment. So began her passage through grief, self-reckoning, and graduate school in Providence, Rhode Island, where the poetics she studied (and sometimes repudiated) became integral to her gradual reconstruction of wholeness. An assemblage of “evidence” rec Late in the evening of December 13, 2007, Andrea Actis found her father, Jeff, facedown dead in her East Vancouver apartment. So began her passage through grief, self-reckoning, and graduate school in Providence, Rhode Island, where the poetics she studied (and sometimes repudiated) became integral to her gradual reconstruction of wholeness. An assemblage of “evidence” recovered from emails about paranormal encounters sent and received by Jeff ([email protected]), junk mail from false prophets, an annotated excerpt from Laura (Riding) Jackson’s “The Serious Angels: A True Story,” and transcripts of Actis’ dreams, conversations, and messages to the dead, Grey All Over not only celebrates a rare, close, complicated father-daughter bond, it also boldly expands the empathetic and critical capacities of poetry itself. In pulling us outside the comfort zones of received aesthetics and social norms, Actis asks us to embrace with whole seriousness “the pragmatics of intuition” in all the ways we read, live, and love. “When a loved one dies, there’s all this stuff to deal with, and in the midst of grief we begin to collect, sort, document, store, and discard. Andrea Actis has taken the stuff surrounding her father’s death and created a book that is, like grief, in turns heartbreaking, wise, chaotic, drunk, wry, and always unflinchingly honest. This powerful testament of survival is for anyone who has felt the ‘déjà vu in reverse’ of grief. It is for the living.”— Sachiko Murakami “Love letter, experimental poem, meditation, conversation with the dead—Andrea Actis’s compelling debut is unlike any memoir I’ve ever read. In one passage, Actis digs out the biggest piece of bone she can find in the vessel of her father’s ashes and gently bites on it. Reading Grey All Over I had a similar sensation. Ash. Bone. Love.”— Jen Currin “This absolutely beautiful work makes plain that seriousness feels like love.”— Aisha Sasha John

28 review for Grey All Over

  1. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    Riveting memoir. Clear, sharp, fearlessly honest prose and poetry. Highly recommended.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Michel Castagné

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline Musial

  4. 5 out of 5

    Leah Bailly

  5. 4 out of 5

    Wayde Compton

  6. 5 out of 5

    Leah Horlick

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jani Krulc

  8. 5 out of 5

    Julian Day

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jacob Wren

  10. 4 out of 5

    Robin Simpson

  11. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jay Jolles

  13. 5 out of 5

    Rachael Kimmerling

  14. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Scott

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jasmine

  16. 4 out of 5

    Madeleine Maillet

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

  18. 4 out of 5

    Alej

  19. 4 out of 5

    Annick MacAskill

  20. 5 out of 5

    Mary Deminion

  21. 4 out of 5

    Andrea MacPherson

  22. 5 out of 5

    Nick

  23. 5 out of 5

    Leanna Greenway

  24. 4 out of 5

    Natalie Simpson

  25. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

  26. 5 out of 5

    Sukh

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lila

  28. 5 out of 5

    Crystal

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