Set in a society where self-preservation is as much an art as a science, Composite Creatures follows Norah and Arthur, who are learning how to co-exist in their new little world. Though they hardly know each other, everything seems to be going perfectly – from the home they’re building together to the ring on Norah’s finger.
But survival in this world is a tricky thing, the air is thicker every day and illness creeps fast through the body. And the earth is becoming increasingly hostile to live in. Fortunately, Easton Grove is here for that in the form of a perfect little bundle to take home and harvest. You can live for as long as you keep it – or her – close.
Here are poems of human evolution and natural laws, of technology, of the world’s problems and the twisted inventions we create. Each encounter takes a host of characters to the brink of epiphany – sometimes they’ll burn bright, and sometimes they’ll fall apart.
Step into a world of explorers, philosophers, automatons, wild things, and the ghosts that dwell deep in the heart of the earth itself.
Little Quakes Every Day will be published on 9th November 2020 by Valley Press.
“Hardaker is a rising talent; she hunts for what it means to be human. This first full collection looks at the world and the creations we make to keep moving through the little quakes that shake every day. Clear, concise, inventive and sharp, these poems burn like shooting stars.”
– Angela Readman
Bird, beast or man, we each have the same element at our core: bones. While our forms may change, the bones always remain – and in this thrilling debut, the poet celebrates their beauty and structure though folk tales, philosophy, daydreams and night terrors.
Aided by a host of characters including a girl who fell in love with a mountain, a woman who can only ever look at you sideways, and a man made of bees, within this slim volume Caroline Hardaker creates a dozen unforgettable worlds entirely her own.
Published by Valley Press, 2017, Bone Ovation was a Poetry Book Society Winter 2017 Selection, and was selected for Sunderland University Summer School’s future Creative Writing degree students in 2018, and taught in the first year of their Creative Writing degree.
– Travelling Man
‘Caroline Hardaker’s debut poetry pamphlet is a triumph of contemporary myth-making.’
– Sabotage Reviews (Read full review)
‘Bone Ovation is a unique collection of poetry which disturbed me into thinking differently about bodies, history, perception and psyches. It does so with a great orchestral style which invites re-reading and re-assessment. Go check it out!’
– Russell Jones (Read full review)
‘The poems in Bone Ovation are simultaneously soothing and sinister. Each piece here is its own myth – myths that have waited for the right poet to come along before they could be told. Prepare to be transported, disturbed, and enchanted.’
– Kate Garrett
‘The handle of myth is light-hearted and humble, using art and language as tools for reference and meaning. Bone Ovation is a small fable of poetic thought, shaping new imaginings of the modern world to add to an ancient history of mythic story-telling.’
– Kirsty Watling, The Contemporary Small Press (Read full review)
‘Bone Ovation is brilliantly observed and refreshingly unique. The kind of poetry I love!’
– Stephen Daniels, Amaryllis
‘Bone Ovation is a thoroughly enjoyable read – particularly for those amongst us who have a keen interest in the magical and mythical or perhaps in folklore. For the most part, these read as a book of dark fairy tales of the present. Though they may appear simple on the surface, much like a swan on the surface of a pond, there is a lot of busy footwork going on beneath. A great achievement and one sincerely recommended.’
– Amy Kinsman, Riggwelter Poetry (Read full review)
‘A strong debut, and one that makes me want to read more from this up-and-coming author.’
– Marija Smits (Read full review)