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Salena Godden is one of Britain's best loved poets and performers. She is also an activist, broadcaster, memoirist and essayist and is widely anthologised. She has published several volumes of poetry, the latest of which was Pessimism is for Lightweights, and a literary childhood memoir, Springfield Road. Mrs Death Misses Death is her debut novel. A BBC Radio 4 documentary following Godden's progress on the novel over twelve months was broadcast in 2018. In November 2020 she was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. @salenagodden | salenagodden.co.uk
February 2021 Book Club Recommendation Click here to see our Reading Group Questions. Excuse me while I rave about this book, it’s so different, so powerful, so fabulous that I’m experiencing reading elation after finishing it. When Wolf Willeford meets Mrs Death, he becomes her scribe and travels with her to view humanity as it circulates from life to death. A renowned performance poet, this is Salena Godden’s debut novel. In 2018 a BBC Radio 4 documentary was broadcast as it followed the novel as it was written over twelve months. Containing poetry, chants, commentary, recollections, moments in time, and all within the most wonderful story, this is a recognisable yet totally unique take on death. Her words entered my thoughts and made me see, search, examine, they entered my heart and made me feel. Small intimate and intricate moments sit alongside huge stories that are all linked by death. My feelings span from humour to heartbreak, from darkness to light, and all the while the story flows with strength and beauty. There may well be some emotionally difficult paths to explore along the way, and while uncomfortable reading in places this is as much about life, love, and hope as it is death. This is a reading experience I won’t forget and I just had to choose it as one of my Liz Picks of the Month and of course a LoveReading Star Book. Celebrating life and opening up questions on how we view death, Mrs Death Misses Death is a wake-up call of a book that I will be recommending far and wide.
Be clear, Fishing in the Aftermath is more that a sweeping up exercise, more than a greatest hits retrospective, more than a gathering up of old work. Salena takes us on a hair-raising ride through the process of a writer, the highs, the lows, the drinks, the lovers, the fights, the sex (especially the sex) that she has embraced like a method actor in search of a character, and shared with audiences over twenty years. Like a 21st Century female Bukowski Godden delivers her message straight and full strength. Not for the weak-kneed or faint-hearted, Salena is a hurricane of personality and energy, and the full force of the considerable talent that has made her a hit at literary festivals the world over is delivered here in all its frank glory.Fishing In The Aftermath - Poems 1994-2014 marks twenty years of poetry and performance and the majority of the work included here is previously unpublished in book form.