Kevin powers

Keywords: kevin powers, author, the yellow birds, iraq war, war novel, letter composed, love poem, iraq war novel, poet, debut novel, writer, veteran, vcu, university of texas, war poetry
Description: This website is maintained by Kevin Powers, author of "The Yellow Birds."

The Yellow Birds has been shortlisted for the Center for Fiction's Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize

"This is an impressive, moving and potentially important novel that needs to be read, as much for its humanity as for the horrors it so sweetly describes."

"While few will have expected the war in Iraq to bring forth a novel that can stand beside All Quiet on the Western Front or The Red Badge of Courage, The Yellow Birds does just that, for our time, as those books did for theirs."

"The minute I read Kevin Powers' marvelous first sentence -- 'The war tried to kill us in the spring' -- I knew I was in the hands of an exceptional writer. That line is right up there with "Call me Ishmael." And I wasn't disappointed. Powers poetic gifts render the experience of Americans in Iraq with great emotional intensity. War has been a subject of literature ever since The Iliad. The best books transcend their time and circumstances to say something enduring and truthful about war itself. The Yellow Birds belongs in that category."

"The Yellow Birds skulks along, detached and undemanding, until all of a sudden you turn a page and find yourself weeping."

"We haven’t just been waiting for a great novel to come out of the Iraq War, our 21st century Vietnam; we have also been waiting for something more important, a work of art that illuminates our flawed and complex and striving humanity behind all such wars. At last we have both in Kevin Powers’ The Yellow Birds."

"What happens to soldiers at war? The Yellow Birds delivers answers that should rightfully unnerve us, if we're still willing--ten long years into Iraq and Afghanistan--to contemplate "our little pest of a war." The human cost is surely beyond any comprehensible measure, but in this haunting, unflinching crucible of a novel, Kevin Powers gives us the essence, with all comfortable, corrupting illusion and rhetoric burned away."

"The Yellow Birds is a superb novel. Call it a war novel or a first novel or whatever you'd like. Powers has created a powerful work of art that captures the complexity and life altering realities of combat service. This book will endure. Read it and then put it way up on that high rare shelf alongside Ernest Hemingway and Tim O'Brien."

"This is a novel I've been waiting for. The Yellow Birds is born from experience and rendered with compassion and intelligence. All of us owe Kevin Powers our heartfelt gratitude.”

"The Yellow Birds is the story of a man drowning. The brutal clamour of war is silent next to the anger, fear and guilt of the hero as he tries to process what it is he's part of and what it is he's become. Kevin Powers has conjured a poetic and devastating account of war's effect on the individual."

“The most recent war is much like the most ancient, torn bodies, cracked psyches, the emotional roundelay of pride, pain, confusion and sorrow. In The Yellow Birds, Kevin Powers has delivered an exceptional novel from the war in Iraq, written in clean, evocative prose, lyric and graphic, in assured rhythms, a story for today and tomorrow and the next.”

"This book is so heartfelt and so good that it not only reaffirms the power of fiction to tell the truth about the unspeakable, but also asks serious questions of a generation of writers--myself included--who have thus far avoided addressing these disastrous wars directly. Reading The Yellow Birds I became certain that I was in the presence of a text that will win plaudits, become a classic, and hold future narratives of the war to a higher standard. Impeccably structured and told with the poetry of a master, I often had to put the book down, close my eyes and savour the depth of the writing. Comparisons with Hemingway will be inevitable because of the brevity and economical style, and with Cormac McCarthy because of the author's talent for landscape. But Powers builds on this literary foundation to create a style of his own. He writes without hauteur, and his insights into the post-traumatic condition have a degree of sharpness that frequently subvert the classical mode of his storytelling and leave the reader with heart hammering. This is a superb literary achievement. I urge everyone to read it."

"Compelling, brilliantly written, and heart-breakingly true, The Yellow Birds belongs in the same category as Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried and Norman Mailer's The Naked and the Dead. Thus far the definitive novel of our long wars in the Middle East; this book is certain to be read and taught for generations to come."

"Kevin Powers' The Yellow Birds is written with an intensity which is deeply compelling; every moment, every memory, every object, every move, are conjured up with a fierce and exact concentration and sense of truth. The music of his prose has an exquisite mixture of control and then release which mirrors the action of the book, and the psychological and physical pressures under which the characters are placed."

"This book epitomises the power of the written word; the language is at once poetic and brutal, vivid and sparse. A stunning, timely and engrossing novel."

Photogallery Kevin powers:

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