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Potomac Books


Sleep in Me, Sleep in Me, 0803225350, 0-8032-2535-0, 978-0-8032-2535-0, 9780803225350, Jon Pineda , American Lives, Sleep in Me, 0803233558, 0-8032-3355-8, 978-0-8032-3355-3, 9780803233553, Jon Pineda , American Lives, Sleep in Me, 0803243413, 0-8032-4341-3, 978-0-8032-4341-5, 9780803243415, Jon Pineda, American Live

Sleep in Me
Jon Pineda

2010. 168 pp.
$21.95 t
Out of Print
2012. 168 pp.
$14.95 t

Against the backdrop of his teenage sister’s car accident—in which a dump truck filled with sand slammed into the small car carrying her and her friends—Jon Pineda chronicles his sister Rica’s sudden transformation from a vibrant high school cheerleader to a girl wheelchair bound and unable to talk. For the next five years of her life, her only ability to communicate was through her rudimentary use of sign language. Lyrical in its approach and unflinching in its honesty, Sleep in Me is a heartrending memoir of the coming-of-age of a boy haunted by a family tragedy.
A prize-winning poet’s account of the irreparable damage and the new understanding that tragedy brings to his Filipino American family, Pineda’s book is a remarkable story maneuvering between childhood memories of his sister cheerleading and moments of monitoring her in a coma and changing her adult diapers. Pineda adeptly navigates between these moments of idyllic youth and heartbreaking sadness. Vivid and lyrical, his story is an exploration of what it means to live deeply with tragedy and of the impact such a story can have on a boy’s journey to manhood.

Jon Pineda is an assistant professor of English at the University of Mary Washington and also teaches in the MFA creative writing program at Queens University of Charlotte. He is the author of Apology and three books of poetry, Little AnodynesThe Translator’s Diary, and Birthmark.

"Jon Pineda turns a simmering lens on his tween and teen years as his family, splintered and stoic, copes with the aftermath of his sister's incapacitation and demise. In Sleep in Me, Pineda explores, rather than resolves, whether such trauma made him stronger or simply more attuned to heartbreak."—Lisa Romeo, Foreword

"Sleep in Me is essentially pure rendered memory, a book that can be taken down from the shelf and opened to any chapter, any moment however random and fleeting, and can make us feel the grand weight of tragedy, and the victory when we fight it."—Noah Renn, Virginian-Pilot

"Pineda lays bare his struggles with family duty and identity in this literary standout."—Julie Kane, Library Journal

"[Pineda's] muted, lyrical messages, to be savored at length, remind us of the value of listening deeply, to ourselves and others."—Gina Webb, Atlanta Journal-Constitution

"Pineda has built his reputation as a poet, but he expands his literary territory with this powerful portrait of love and loyalty between siblings." —Rigoberto González, Critical Mass

"Pineda's account of his sister's cheerleading and overnight transformation makes for a powerful survey of the impact of tragedy on a young boy's coming of age in this outstanding, vivid family memoir." —Diane C. Donovan, California Bookwatch

Named one of the top memoirs of 2010 by Library Journal.
2010 Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers program selection

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