Vincent Van Gogh is the archetypical tortured artistic genius. His obsession with painting, combined with mental illness, propels him through an unhappy life full of failures and unrewarding relationships. He fails at being a preacher to coal miners. He fails in his relationships with women. He earns some respect among his fellow painters, especially Paul Gauguin, but he does not get along with them. He only manages to sell one painting in his lifetime. The one constant good in his life is his brother Theo, who is unwavering in his moral and financial support. Written by John Oswalt <jao@>
As if mining the marrow of her own bones, Daley-Ward has condensed her journey from preadolescence to womanhood in beautifully haunting pieces. Born of Nigerian and Jamaican heritage, the poet was raised by her grandparents in the north of England, growing up exquisitely attuned to compassion and isolation in a hardscrabble world rich with leavings. In bone she grapples with epic subjects such as desire, religion, depression, abuse, and loss; navigates the raw experiences of being a first-generation black British woman; and explores the vulnerability and redemption in falling in love.