We Imagined It Was Rain
Hailed by ZZ Packer as “a master of tone, detail, and imagery”, Andrew Siegrist’s debut collection We Imagined It Was Rain is a love song to Tennessee.
This is a preorder! This title will release on October 5, 2021 and ship in late September.
Hailed by ZZ Packer as “a master of tone, detail, and imagery”, Andrew Siegrist’s debut collection We Imagined It Was Rain is a lovesong to Tennessee. These loosely connected stories are imbued with tenderness, seriousness, and a deep understanding of the human spirit. A young man moves to the the mountains and builds an heirloom chest in the wake of his son’s death; a town official must make the decision to execute a circus elephant; two siblings help their father commit suicide; a preacher picks up the pieces of his ruined church, and his marriage, after a devasting flood; locals share stories of the girl with eyelashes so long she can braid them. Siegrist demonstrates careful attention to the smallest moments, to the rain on a windowpane, to individual mementos passed down through generations, in this far-reaching and thoughtful collection.
A striking and thoughtful debut, Siegrist demonstrates careful attention to the smallest moments, to the rain on a window pane.
We Imagined It Was Rain is the winner of our 2020 C. Michael Curtis Short Story Book Prize.
Praise for We Imagined It Was Rain
“Reading We Imagined It Was Rain is like entering a dream journal—every sense is heightened and stretched, every memory expanded and reassembled in the hopes of deciphering the past or surviving the present. This collection reminds me of the very best writers of contemporary rural stories: Jesmyn Ward, Bobbie Ann Mason, and Wendell Berry. A keen eye for the truths of the human condition—as well as a mastery of tone, detail, and imagery—make this writer one to watch.”
—Z.Z. Packer, author of Drinking Coffee Elsewhere
"The stories in this book haunt the heart like ghosts. Siegrist’s eye for detail is so keen and surprising it feels visionary. Though set in contemporary times, these are the oldest types of tales, of men and women, of loss and love, almost ancient in their humanity yet made bright for us again in the dark Tennessee woods. We Imagined It Was Rain does not read like a new debut in Southern Literature but rather as Southern Literature’s new debut. Mark it down. Our children will be reading Andrew Siegrist, longing for beauty in some future world, well after we’re gone. Mystic and Earthbound, searching and wise; this book is brilliant."
—M.O. Walsh, New York Times bestselling author of My Sunshine Away and The Big Door Prize
"There’s much to be dazzled by in We Imagined It was Rain—the startling images, the lean and lucid prose—but what I admire most is that Andrew Siegrist understands, more deeply than any young writer I’ve read in a long time, that the world remains a mysterious place, its magic grounded in the everyday dreamscapes of love and longing and loss. Somehow, Siegrist has conjured up the feel of magical realism without resorting to trickery or relying on the fantastic and that, fellow readers, is a feat worthy of our very best attention."
—Michael Knight, author of Eveningland