On a rainy morning, I received lushly gorgeous photos of a baby brand-new to the world through my library email. In my inbox of book buying, interlibrary loan info, event details, the news of this baby girl dims everything else to irrelevancy. A little girl. A healthy baby.

Heather Harpham, in her new book, quotes the figure that 245 babies are born every minute. Statistics? Oh, so what.

Hallelujah: the town of Woodbury is one soul richer.

My first child, my girl, was born just before seven on a spring night, perfect… She smelled like sliced apple and salted pretzels, like the innocent recent arrival from a saline world that she was.

The opening lines of Heather Harpham’s The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After Happiness


By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

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