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Thursday with Junkie Wife

May 9, 2019

“…he wants me rigid—
a depository—
like I’m there but not there.”
Alexis Rhone Fancher

To call this book addicting could almost be cliché, but addicting is precisely what it is. From the first poem, readers are so vividly compelled to keep going, and what makes this book unique is its composition as one whole story, unfolding so eloquently with each poem.

This book sat atop my ever growing stack of poetry collections I hope to get to this year. Its cleverness begins with the title, Junkie Wife, and at first I wondered how well it would speak to me—someone who never experienced addiction. By the second poem, however, it was absolutely evident I would not be able to put this book down.

From its boldly unfiltered truth to its emotional rawness, Alexis Rhone Fancher perfectly encapsulates the strength of vulnerability with such unapologetic power. As a survivor of abuse myself, there are so many elements to Junkie Wife that resonate far more deeply than anticipated like bodily autonomy, sexuality and a woman’s right to her pleasure, unwanted pregnancies, and the toxicity of relationships gone wrong. By the end of the book, I was overcome with this sense of solidarity that had blossomed, as if someone else not only lived similar circumstances but could also pinpoint the ache.

In an era where women’s voices are finally being heard, Alexis’s work is precisely th