Af­ter­math: Ex­plo­rations of Loss & Grief

Sarah Lopez (Ed­i­tor) Lantz Ar­royo (Ed­i­tor) Ni­cholas Hurd (Ed­i­tor)

Foreword Reviews - - Reviews - TIA SMITH

Radix Me­dia (APRIL) Soft­cover $18.95 (200pp) 978-0-9997137-0-9

Radix Me­dia’s Af­ter­math unites vastly dif­fer­ent voices across cul­tures and ex­pe­ri­ences to ex­plore grief, show­cas­ing the way that pain can both break and re­build its vic­tims.

In­di­vid­ual sto­ries touch upon ex­pe­ri­ences and hard­ships that of­ten fail to re­ceive main­stream recog­ni­tion. From a fic­tional tale of an im­mi­grant Iraqi fam­ily in “Bak­ing Day” to “Now Live Through This,” a graphic nar­ra­tive about a woman over­com­ing do­mes­tic abuse, the col­lec­tion of­fers a poignant, in­ti­mate view of pain from the mar­gins of so­ci­ety.

The writ­ing styles of each piece are vastly dif­fer­ent, fea­tur­ing first-, sec­ond-, and third-per­son nar­ra­tion and vary­ing from lofty de­scrip­tions to di­rect, con­ver­sa­tional prose. What unites each piece is the ex­pres­sive eval­u­a­tion of mourn­ing, be it of a loved one, mem­o­ries, or even free­dom.

Many of the tales fo­cus on tan­gi­ble losses, but oth­ers ex­plore more ab­stract concepts like cul­ture and lib­erty. The poem “Gram­mar School” de­vel­ops a painfully beautiful ex­plo­ration of the theft of cul­ture and lan­guage. The poem in­ter­twines English and Span­ish words to show­case the tragedy and im­mi­nence of los­ing fa­mil­ial bonds and cul­tural her­itage in a for­eign coun­try.

Non­fic­tion sto­ries like “The Mark” show­case the strug­gle of griev­ing for some­thing that is seen as val­ue­less. Silverman writes about her con­man fa­ther and the re­la­tion­ship she strug­gled to main­tain with him. The story delves into the parts of grief that are rarely ac­knowl­edged, like the guilt of mourn­ing some­one that oth­ers are un­able to sym­pa­thize with and the strug­gle to move on with­out so­cial sup­port.

By meld­ing to­gether voices from dif­fer­ent walks of life, Radix Me­dia’s Af­ter­math ex­poses a deep, heart­felt, and widely en­com­pass­ing pic­ture of grief and the growth that stems from it.

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