Coming Soon!

When Kristin Czarnecki lost both her parents within nine months, she sought solace in books, but not just any books.

In Encounters with Inscriptions, Czarnecki writes about the books inscribed and given to her by her parents over the years—an array of novels, short stories, poetry, nature writing, cultural criticism, and a cookbook. As she explores each book, Czarnecki focuses not only on loss but also on the complexities of childhood, on family and friendship, and on the rewards of a life spent reading. She recalls falling in love with poetry for the first time, realizes how the Troubles in Northern Ireland shadowed her adolescence, reflects on the legacy of her mother’s feminism, and comes to know her father better while reading an author he loved. Throughout, she communes with her parents once again in the books they wanted her to have. Czarnecki’s beautifully written, wide-ranging memoir will appeal to fans of books about books, those mourning lost loved ones, and anyone intrigued by the power of literature to inspire, confound, soothe, and surprise us.

“In Encounters with Inscriptions Kristin Czarnecki returns to the books her late parents gave and inscribed to her over the years. Setting herself two goals—to read for pure enjoyment and to venture down any new pathways that might emerge—Czarnecki embarks upon a wonderfully wise and discursive meditation on grief, childhood, memory, and the pleasures of rereading, one consistently informed by her deep, wide, and lifelong engagement with literature.”
—Katharine Smyth, author of All the Lives We Ever Lived: Seeking Solace in Virginia Woolf


Kristin Czarnecki is the author of a memoir, The First Kristin: The Story of a Naming, and a chapbook, Sliced. She has published creative nonfiction, poetry, literary criticism, and book reviews in a variety of venues. Kristin holds a Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati and was an English professor for many years at Georgetown College. She served two terms as President of the International Virginia Woolf Society and is an editorial board member of the Virginia Woolf Miscellany. She lives in Gloucester, Massachusetts.