Michele HermanJun 20, 2023
Just Another Jack
The Private Lives of Nursery Rhymes
Finishing Line Press 2022
Michele Herman is author of the novel Save The Village (Regal House Publishing, 2022) and the poetry chapbook Victory Boulevard (Finishing Line Press) as well as Just Another Jack (Finishing Line Press, 2022). Her poems, stories, and essays have appeared widely in publications including The Sun, Ploughshares, The Hudson Review and The New York Times. The Recipient of several writing awards, she teaches fiction, poetry and memoir at The Writers Studio, works as a developmental editor and writing coach, writes columns for The Village Sun, translates French songs and occasionally performs her own work in cabaret and theatrical settings. You can learn more at www.micheleherman.com.
In Just Another Jack: The Private Lives of Nursery Rhymes, poet and novelist Michele Herman explores a variety of timeless human predicaments - adolescent lust, overprotective parents, dementia, gender confusion and more - by imagining her way into the actual lives of eight familiar nursery-rhyme characters. Many authors have taken fictional or mythological characters and brought them into our contemporary world, but these eight story-poems accomplish something more unusual by roaming around in Mr. and Mrs. Sprat's house to find out what ails them, following little Bo Beep out to the Welsh pasture to learn how she lost track of her sheep, conjuring up a twin brother for Little Miss Muffet, and much more.
Save The Village features Herman's beloved home village, which feels itself like a character as alive as any other we meet in this novel as sprawling as it is particular. Life hasn’t turned out quite the way Becca Cammeyer of Greenwich Village – once voted most likely to land on Broadway or in jail for a good cause – had planned. Her only child has moved to another continent, she’s still living in a fifth-floor walkup with her aging dog, still single, still nearly broke, still not on speaking terms with her best friend or mother, and still hearing the ghost of her long-dead father whispering in her ear. But she’s a semi-famous tour guide, and on a perfect October evening, Becca almost believes all is well with her world as she helps a group of South Carolinian tourists fall in love with her beloved Village. The tour concludes, and Becca sends the women on their way, unaware that her world is about to be upended. In the aftermath of a tragedy, Becca must come to terms with her own paralysis, her survivor’s guilt, and the messiness of her life. She embarks on wildly improbable reconciliations and new relationships. At once a love story about Greenwich Village and a reflection on a changing world, Save the Village reveals how when a community comes together, everyone wins. You can find Save The Village at Regal House Press and at Amazon.
You can learn more about Megan Wildhood at meganwildhood.com.