The Body Papers

The Body Papers


By Grace Talusan

Winner of The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, Grace Talusan’s memoir The Body Papers powerfully explores the fraught contours of her own life as a Filipino immigrant and survivor of cancer and sexual abuse.

Book Details

Paperback List Price: $22.99 • ISBN: 9781632061836 • Publication: 4/30/19 • 5" x 7.125" • 208 pages • Nonfiction: Memoir—Family / Trauma / Immigration / Filipino Culture / Survival Stories • Territory: World • eBook ISBN: 9781632061843

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About the Book

With dexterous literary subtlety, debut memoirist Grace Talusan excavates a legacy of violence and abuse that, unmentionable at the time, dominated her childhood and shaped her adulthood. Throughout, she navigates the psychological stress of immigrant life in America, and lifts the heavy shroud of secrecy and silence that presses down on her community. This artfully wrought and insightful memoir recounts the mounting aggressions inflicted upon the author’s body—illness, sexual abuse, and racism—that all come to bear on her ability to write, develop human connections, and survive.

Giving a voice to the Philippine diaspora, The Body Papers simmers beneath the surface of a New England suburb that is rife with the secret pain of immigrant children and their parents struggling to assimilate while remaining connected to their culture. Interlacing prose and visual images—such as immigration papers, cancer test results, and legal certificates—The Body Papers maps an associative path to the epicenters of reverberating injury, investigates the myriad ways in which trauma can render one invisible, and throughout shines with hope and breathtaking resilience.


About the Author

 © Alonso Nichols

© Alonso Nichols

Grace Talusan is a writer and writing teacher. As a child, she immigrated to the United States from the Philippines with her parents. She has published essays, longform journalism, fiction and book reviews in Brevity, Creative Nonfiction, Boston Magazine, Boston Globe, The Rumpus, and many others. She is the recipient of a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship to the Philippines and an Artist Fellowship Award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and has been awarded residencies to Hedgebrook, Ragdale, and the Dune Shacks in Provincetown. She is a graduate of Tufts University and the MFA Program in Writing at the University of California, Irvine. At Tufts University, she teaches in the English Department and The Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life. She is a longtime member and teacher at Grub Street, an independent creative writing center. She lives outside of Boston with her husband.