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Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's New & Selected Poems 1989-2009

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's Leaving Maggie Hope

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's The Three Great Secret Things

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's The Man Who

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's The Search for Wonder in the Cradle of the World

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's A Small Thing Like a Breath

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's The Girl in the Yellow Raincoat

Book Cover of Anthony S. Abbott's The Vital Lie

Books of Poetry and Fiction by Anthony S. Abbott

Anthony Abbott’s most recent collection of poetry, is stunning in both craftsmanship and sensibility. In poem after poem he forges a compassionate pact with the world and, like all enduring pacts, it is one that sustains and confirms—the poet’s life, ours, and the great healing powers of language.


     -Robert Hedin, author of  Old Glory


Oh Lord what a wonderful book --- joyous and profound! Tony Abbott is a master of dealing with nothing less than the great circling round of life itself – the whole ball of wax – from youth to adulthood to the unexpected grace of old age.  

     -Lee Smith, author of Mrs. Darcy and the Blue-Eyed           Stranger and The Last Girls

Read the Independent Tribune Review by Bill Diskin  here
Read the Wild Goose Poetry Review by Scott Owens here

What Writers Do, with its behind the scenes look at the craft of writing, celebrates the series that continues to connect great writers with delighted readers. For more than 20 years the Visiting Writers Series at Lenoir-Rhyne University has championed great writers — both established and emerging. Rand Brandes, series founder and editor, and Anthony Abbott, this volume’s editor, have brought together some of the series’ most beloved and memorable writers to form a collection that includes: new prose by Bret Lott, Mark Powell and Dori Sanders; new poems by Sharon Olds, Fred Chappell and Billy Collins; and classic memoir excerpts by the likes of John Updike, Reynolds Price and Frank McCourt. More than words, this volume also features photographs of the writers and where they work.

Edited by Anthony S. Abbott and Rand Brandes

"It is a special pleasure to have this gathering of poems from more than three decades, where the range and depth of Tony Abbott's work are now clear... rare among contemporary poetry, there is a vein of relish, human connection and joy, coursing through Abbott's poems.  And I am happy to say the verve and zest are contagious."

-Robert Morgan, author of The Strange Attractor: New and Selected Poems

"Leaving Maggie Hope is the most moving coming-of-age story I have read in many years. The pain of having an unreliable mother is scary and very real and so is David's journey toward a hard-won self-reliance as he learns that love may be found in surprising places. Like Kaye Gibbons' novel Ellen Foster, this is a book for all ages to read and read again."
      -- Lee Smith, author of The Last Girls and Fair and Tender Ladies

"I have been a fan of Tony Abbott's writing for a long time. Because he is first a poet (and he will always be a poet), it isn't a bit surprising that the language in his debut novel is sensory and vivid and downright loamy. He drops his reader directly into the world of the story, and though young David may be uncertain and lost, the reader is not. Leaving Maggie Hope is a story of quiet tragedies and longing. It left me feeling sorrowful and hopeful at the same time. I'm already waiting for the sequel!

 -- Sheri Reynolds, author of The Rapture of Canaan

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The Three Great Secret Things takes us back into that strange era, that oddly innocent time, when a boy could lose his heart to God, poetry, and a bright sassy girl all at once and on purpose.  Anthony Abbott treats his boarding school characters with great tenderness and respect, following young David Lear as he pursues the three great loves that secretly ARE his education (and the one sassy girl is one we won't forget for a long time to come.

    -Josephine Humphreys, author of "No Where Else on Earth"

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"In the Tony Abbott of The Man Who we have a master puppeteer who works them all. And when you stare into the puppets long enough (as in the Japanese Bunraku puppet theatre) the puppeteer has suddenly disappeared. Each Man Who is alive, just so. The range is amazing. Can you imagine the combined insights, the perceptions at once painful and tender of a John Berryman and a William Stafford? Look no further, Friend. Yes,  . . . Light creeps in/ after darkness even when we think/ it never can.

          -Ron Bayes, Founding Editor St. Andrews College Press

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"I was first struck by the voice in Tony Abbott's poems. The idiom is contemporary, alive, dramatic, the lines fluent and exact. The language is alert, resourceful. I admire the delight and celebration, the openness and honesty, the willingness to confront fear. I admire the fullness of emotions in the poems, even a sense of the miraculous that takes us back to the very source of poetry 'in the cradle of the world,' as well as forward to poetry of the future."

        -Robert Morgan


"Realistic, specific, tough, tender and full of a lyric keening, Tony Abbott's The Search for Wonder in the Cradle of the World is a collection to savor."

        -Maxine Kumin

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"These are poems that are achingly real, as so much current poetry is not. These poems are about people, and about the moments in our lives that change us forever -they are about joy, about loss, about the dark places of the heart. These poems are not about word-play, or cleverness. They are about us."

-  Lee Smith

In Abbott's vibrant collection of poems, a lucid voice embraces a lyric intelligence of impressive power and understanding . . . with their passionate knowing of important things, Abbott's poems secure a place in the mind and persist there, becoming familiar and loved.

    -Stephen Sandy


The Girl in the Yellow Raincoat is a moving and intelligent book. Abbott's wide knowledge of literature informs his experiences; his experience deepens his understanding of literature. And he remembers the especially remembers "the way boys dream" -- at whatever age they are.

    -Fred Chappell

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"The Vital Lie is the most thought-provoking sustained discussion of the illusion and reality theme in the modern drama that I've encountered." 

                         -Kimball King 
                        The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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