Thank you for these generous reviews:
Asunder, Baby by Steven Baird is a profound collection of prose and poetry. In his introduction, Baird conveys that short stories have never been easy for him to write. Yet, his words flow seamlessly, creating such vivid settings that I can’t fathom him having any difficulty at all. His stories and poems reveal loss, beauty, love, and despair with an intensity that digs deeply into the hearts of his readers. Baird’s originality and authenticity in portraying his characters and backdrops are the brilliance of this intellectual compilation.
I found myself dog-earing page after page. Many of the stories and poems turned into favorites, but a few I’d like to highlight are “Where we go dancing,” “Your father’s Delta 88,” “Cinnamon Suites,” “The last angel of the Lord,” and “Rhapsody.”
An example from “Where we go dancing”
“…I can dance the ears off a row of corn when I have a mind to. Why, that corn becomes ashamed of itself and wishes it could be half as worthy as old dry cabbage or a leaf of backfield tobacco then have to endure another minute of the spectaculation of my feet.”
And from “Your father’s Delta 88”
“…and watch the eddies pull quilt-shaped flowers along their creases, folding them, unfolding them, pressing their petals into wine.”
Asunder, Baby is the first book I’ve read from this author, but I look forward to reading more of his incredible storytelling and poetic verse. Highly recommended for those who love prose and poetry that have you pondering and deeply feeling at the same time. – Lauren Scott
I first encountered Steven Baird’s writing several years ago when a mutual friend posted a link to one of his short stories. I was enthralled and begin to follow him on his website, anxiously awaiting each new piece. Steven never—and I mean never—disappoints. His writing is always evocative, his characters compelling, and he creates emotional landscapes that stay with you years later. This new collection is no different. I keep going back and re-reading the stories and wishing there were more. – Suzanne
“Asunder, Baby” is a unique assortment of short stories and poetry. The entire book has a poetic flare and presentation with a mixture of beautiful and dark images. I enjoyed many stories and poems and how some characters and storylines appeared more than once. Here are a few that caught my eye: “Where we go dancing,” “A gopherwood box,” “Appomattox,” “The middle of a very rainy afternoon,” “Louisiana baptism,” and “Pentimento.” This is for those who enjoy short stories and poetry that take them into a moment with vivid and insightful descriptions. It differs from other collections, and I appreciate that difference. – D.L. Finn
Asunder, baby is a chronological series of short stories with different but similar settings and small-town characters. Baird is a literary author, and some of the stories have atypical punctuation (still totally clear, though; as an example, the story titles do not have conventional capitalization). Other stories include poetry verses or the lyrics of retro-popular songs. With the songs comes a bit of nostalgia. I bet ya start singing the songs in your head like I did.
Baird’s dialogue passages are marvelous in that they move the story along while defining the characters who speak it. Baird is also good with quotable bits. I can’t help but put one in this review:
“…An age ago when we were an age that never impressed us much.” (Ain’t that the truth?!)
“Light of the West Saugerties” at the beginning of the collection and “This day, just now” at the frame the collection with stories of Birdie and Harry. You get a sense of what’s gone on between them over the years that are missing while the other stories in the collection take over. It makes for an incredibly gratifying journey.
Overall, this collection is literary and intellectual and slightly experimental, and it’s written with the obvious skill of an author who has the writing chops to pull it off. Five huge stars! — Priscilla Bettis
Asunder, baby is available from Amazon