A sequence of brief prose paragraphs—sometimes as short as a single line—Hadestown is haunting, frightening, raw, and hard to stop reading.
More often, though, the transfer is subterranean: our work is expanded by the simple fact of our exposures, much the way a child’s vocabulary grows simply as a function of reading.
All I knew at the outset was that I was following this very evocative voice that came to me pretty much out of nowhere…
You can see the poet submerged in the novelist’s original, energetic prose and fine attention to detail.
Sometimes I wonder: is my life better or worse for having had her?
This gorgeous novel satisfies readers fascinated by the complexity of grief and human behavior. It is wise. It knows small, personal stories can offer far-reaching truth. How we continue to live when recovery is not possible—that is a story worth telling.
…Each of my characters carries something of me inside them, a lung or a knee or a tendency to snort or rage or curl up into the fetal position.
…I love the music of language, and whether I’m writing prose or poetry I’m really tuned into the sounds, the rhythms…
…Ms. Triedman has written an emotionally compelling novel that haunts you after the final page is read…the loss grips you like a hand around your throat, so palpable is the pain.
12 Most Memorable Debuts of 2013 — The Other Room by Kim Triedman: a powerful, emotional story about two parents grieving the loss of their one-year-old daughter. Triedman, an accomplished poet, has proven herself to be quite the novelist.
…a tale of family dynamics and relationships strained to the breaking point by the trickle-down of grief.
…I have to hear sentences in my head in order to write them, and in hearing them I hear their individual music. Every sentence or phrase is its own composition; every word that fits into that composition must bring to it so many things: rhythm and mouth-feel and its own specific constellation of sounds and syllables. It’s a thoroughly sensual experience….
…The story seemed to need to layer itself, Rashomon-like, so that in the end the reader is forced to make his or her own decisions of how and why things happen and where his/her sympathies lie. I really like this kind of structural disjointedness and the palimpsest it creates. It adds a sense of texture and depth, of drilling down, so that the narrative feels like it is growing in three dimensions at the same time.
I just write what I need to write. I think the upside of that is that my work carries a sharp emotional honesty to it, and I think readers will respond to that.
The Other Room is an excellent example of storytelling at its best. I would highly recommend this novel to adult readers who enjoy intensely emotional stories with well-developed characters. I am a new fan of Kim Triedman and look forward to reading her next work of fiction.
It’s a story about grief, but it’s also a story about the emergence from grief. So it’s painful but it’s also hopeful.
I never know where I’m going until I land at the end, and only then do I realize what I needed to write about. It worked that way with the novel… At first I didn’t know I was writing one. Then I did. Then I had to get to the end to find out why I had to write it.
Triedman is a poet, and that talent translated well to the novel format (The Other Room is her debut novel). It’s a very descriptive, beautifully written exploration of grief…
Words just started delighting me so much, it was such an affirming experience to sit down and capture a poem, and bringing that sensibility to the novel was really extraordinary. And I think the novel really benefited from the back and forth…
Making the choice to use multiple points of view for my novel was one of the most important – and serendipitous – decisions I made.
This story just started telling itself to me, and I started paying attention.
The Other Room is a well-written and emotional intense exploration of parenthood and marriage amidst unspeakable loss, as well as how the subversion or containment of grief can nevertheless have far-reaching implications on the lives of others in its wake.
—Review of THE OTHER ROOM by Kim Triedman, Everyday I Write the Book, 9/29/2013
Kim Triedman’s The Other Room is a moving, often painful depiction of how a baby’s death sends a couple spiraling away from each other. The author’s at-times poetic descriptions of grief and lack of emotional connection between these aching characters are detailed, but do not slow down this sad but ultimately redemptive story.
This was an easy to love yet emotionally taxing novel. Imagine if your own life had been ripped apart by the worst possible tragedy, the loss of your still-quite-young child. How would you cope? What would you do to get through your every day tasks and do more than simply exist? In “the Other Room,” award winning poet and author Kim Triedman explores the answers to this question–and she does it well.
—Review of THE OTHER ROOM by Kim Triedman, Readful Things Blog, 9/22/2013
I was so impressed with this book. The subject matter could have skewed maudlin and over-the-top but Triedman does a masterful job dealing with the intricacies of the loss of a child. My heart ached for ALL of the characters. Triedman does an excellent job of fleshing each of them out so that they are all multi-dimensional. It is a very affecting work. BOTTOM LINE: Highly recommended. A beautiful and haunting look at the collapse of a family after the death of a child.
—Review of THE OTHER ROOM by Kim Triedman, Life By Candlelight, 9/16/2013
…Through her sparse prose Triedman conveys a sense of inexorable emptiness that accompanies great loss.
– Review of THE OTHER ROOM, Publisher’s Weekly, 9/2013
I felt like I was the only person who was bothered by the idea until I read this essay by Kim Triedman, a poet and novelist, on the website for WBUR, Boston’s public radio station.
– Twitter Not a Place for Intimate Moments of Death, The Charlotte Observer, 8/14/2013
Triedman’s use of the concrete qualities of space, movement, time and sound become the intermediaries to the character’s feeling. [In} this way, she effectively communicates a loss too senseless and painful for the trite platitudes of commonplace condolences….
Triedman is adept at conveying character’s conflicts and sorrows in a way that is immediate and persuasive. Her experience as a poet resonates in her prose; her language is lyrical and inventive.
– Visceral Debut Broadens Readers Boundaries: The Other Room by Kim Triedman, Boston Area Small Press and Poetry Scene, 8/3/2013
Ever notice how the last thing friends and family seem to expect is that your work may not reflect the public you?…
– Last Gas: Your Family, Your Book, and the Sex in It, Publishing Perspectives by Porter Anderson 7/2/2013
Triedman’s poems (many of them darkly funny) rather deftly navigate that tightrope between lyrical experimentation and emotional resonance.
– Ball State Department of Education Blog, Michael Meyerhofer Recommends “Plum(b)” by Kim Triedman, 4/12/2013
Plum(b) follows in the footsteps of those poets whose revelations about themselves and their relationships have propelled them to legendary status.
–Boston Area Small Press and Poetry Scene, Plum(b), Poems by Kim Triedman, 3/28/2013
There are numerous moments of beauty within [the] few pages of Poets for Haiti. There is a small beauty in its portraits of devastation, a whisper of potential.
– Mother Jones, Saving Haiti With…Poems?, 12/8/2012
Poets for Haiti wears the insignia of openness and generosity, both poetic and humane.
– AGNI, After the Earthquake: Poets for Haiti, 8/2011
Six weeks after the earthquake in Haiti last January, 18 poets gathered in Cambridge to give voice to sorrow and hope…. Now the reading has taken on a new life as a book and a fund-raiser.
– The Boston Globe, Shelf Life: It Takes Two, 11/28/2010
This book is a testimony to the power of art and poetry to respond wherever the need is great and emotional.
– Boston Area Small Press and Poetry Scene, Review of Poets for Haiti, 11/2/2010
Individually, [these] poems offer succor and balm; together, they serve as the most pragmatic expression of solidarity…
Paul Farmer and Ophelia Dahl, Preface, Poets for Haiti: An Anthology of Poetry and Art, 11/2010
When unimaginable disaster strikes, can poetry help? At a benefit event called “Poets For Haiti,” Here and Now’s George Hicks introduces us three Haitian-American writers who use poetry to come to terms with Haiti’s devastation after the earthquake.
– NPR’s Here and Now, 3/5/2010
Winner of the Main Street Rag Chapbook Contest, bathe in it or sleep is an exceptionally fine book that manages to get it right from page one…If I have a single complaint, it is that I want even more of Kim Triedman’s poems to read. I look forward to all that will follow this first chapbook.
– The South Carolina Review, Baudelairean Darkness, Spring 2010
…This poet serves us straight shots of herself; we drink quickly and are deepened… Triedman is a new poet from whom one wishes, as reviewers used actually to say, “to hear more.” What did they mean by more? More for enjoyment, more to balance the weaker work, more in the sense of further development of what is here, valuable and imminent.
– Fiddler Crab Review, 4/27/2009
Triedman can be brilliant when she attempts to capture something not altogether definite…Hints of rebellion suggest a future as a launcher of poetic grenades, should [she] seek it…
Adirondack Review, 2009