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Formats
Paperback Details
  • 01/2022
  • 9781639880492 1639880496
  • 132 pages
  • $16.99
Charles Crittenden
Author
Inhabitant

EXPERIENCE THE MARVEL OF THE UNIVERSE through the eyes of the Inhabitant!

After years of mistreating their home, the Inhabitant has been unexpectedly expelled from Earth and must journey across the universe to find a new home by any means necessary. Haunted by dreams of the past and hopes for the future, they can only rely on their experiences. Taking it day by day (and with a little help from a new friend), they explore new worlds, both wondrous and frightening, on the path to solid ground.

Charles Crittenden's Inhabitant brings a unique blend of poetry and storytelling, inviting the reader to join the search for a new home.

Reviews
Crittenden’s interstellar collection renders in verse an epic yet intimate quest for the future of humanity, as its unnamed narrator, the “Inhabitant,” witnesses devastation befall the Earth (“my world burns alive with nothing i can do to help”) and then, “ejected from my world,” begins a long journey into space, first through our solar neighborhood (“mercury, venus, bright, burnt, and boiling, waiting to be consumed”) and then beyond, “eversearching, everlearning.” The account is vivid and full of feeling—Crittenden likens leaving the Earth to falling, “the gravity losing its attraction,” and the ascent through our atmosphere to being “like a runaway balloon”—and emphasizes throughout the silence and isolation of the heavens, all while occasionally looking back to Earth.

Besides the mysteries of the cosmos and a fury at our mistreatment of the Earth, themes of change and time power Inhabitant, as its narrator marvels at humanity’s small-scale memory, which finds “descendants slowly forgetting / about each and every one who came before.” The Inhabitant has time for such contemplation, because space travel, we learn, is all about waiting; as the Inhabitant pushes ahead, searching for a new home, reflecting on the lesson that our relationship with a planet should be one of cohabitation. These pained thoughts (“never planted what i ate, never returned the trail how i found it”) resonate as the narrator floats, adrift, in the collection’s searching middle section.

Despite the cosmic subject matter Crittenden’s free verse is concrete and direct, its imagery and metaphor always clear, even inviting. The interstellar reaches and the planets the Inhabitant searches may be bleak, but a potent sense of hope warms the void, as the Inhabitant presses ahead in the face of disaster, acknowledging the worst of what our species has done while searching tirelessly for a chance to get it right the next time. This engaging meditation on humanity’s end—and possible new beginning—will move readers with a love of the cosmic.

Takeaway: A moving journey in verse into deep space in search of humanity’s future.

Great for fans of: David C. Kopaska-Merkel and Kendall Evans’s Night Ship to Never, Tracy K. Smith’s Life on Mars.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A

Formats
Paperback Details
  • 01/2022
  • 9781639880492 1639880496
  • 132 pages
  • $16.99

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