This Is Only a Test

Author(s): B.J. Hollars
Original Publish Date: Feb 01, 2016
Product Number: EB00777098
Released: Oct 22, 2019
Business Term: Purchase
ISBN: #9780253018212
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The Truman Capote Prize-winning author "provides an offbeat look at the fragility of human life and our resilience when faced with death" (Kirkus). On April 27, 2011, just days after learning of their pregnancy, B. J. Hollars, his wife, and their future son endured the onslaught of an EF-4 tornado. There, while huddled in a bathtub in their Alabama home, mortality flashed before their eyes. With the last of his computer battery, Hollars began recounting the experience, and would continue to do so in the following years, writing his way out of one disaster only to find himself caught up in another. In this collection of personal essays, Hollars faces tornadoes, drownings, and nuclear catastrophes. These experiences force him to acknowledge the inexplicable while he attempts to overcome his greatest fear—the impossibility of protecting his newborn son from the world's cruelties. Through his and others' stories, Hollars creates a constellation of grief, tapping into the rarely acknowledged intersection between fatherhood and fear, sacrifice and safety, and the humbling effect of losing control of our lives.

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