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Charles D’Ambrosio’s essay collection Orphans spawned something of a cult following. In the decade since the tiny limited-edition volume sold out its print run, its devotees have pressed it upon their friends, students, and colleagues, only to find themselves begging for their copy’s safe return. For anyone familiar with D’Ambrosio’s writing, this enthusiasm should come as no surprise. His work is exacting and emotionally generous, often as funny as it is devastating. Loitering gathers those eleven original essays with new and previously uncollected work so that a broader audience might discover one of our great living essayists. No matter his subject Native American whaling, a Pentecostal hell house,” Mary Kay Letourneau, the work of J. D. Salinger, or, most often, his own family D’Ambrosio approaches each piece with a singular voice and point of view; each essay, while unique and surprising, is unmistakably his own.
Charles D'Ambrosio is the author two collections of short stories, The Point (a finalist for the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award) and The Dead Fish Museum (a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award), as well as the essay collection Orphans. His work has appeared frequently in The New Yorker, as well as in Tin House, The Paris Review, Zoetrope All-Story, A Public Space, and Story. He's been the recipient of the Whiting Writers' Award, an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Lannan Foundation Fellowship, and a USA Rasmuson Fellowship. He lives in Portland, OR.