cover image Wanting: Women Writing About Desire

Wanting: Women Writing About Desire

Edited by Margot Kahn and Kelly McMasters. Catapult, $17.95 trade paper (352p) ISBN 978-1-64622-011-3

Essayists Kahn and McMasters reunite after editing This Is the Place to deliver an impassioned anthology of women’s perspectives on desire. “Our desires—and speaking them aloud—make us powerful,” contend Kahn and McMasters in their introduction, compiling the perspectives of women “parents and pilots, PhDs and porn connoisseurs” on what it means to want. Explaining the excitement of trying new foods, creative writing teacher Michelle Wildgen relates that “I wanted to eat, yes, but more than anything I was hungry to know” about unfamiliar dishes and the locales they come from. Poet Rena Priest contemplates her Native American ancestry and culture, discussing her wish for the decolonization of Native American land and for her to not have to “overcome stereotypes” to be treated with respect. “Can a dyke wear a dick and just have some damn fun?” asks essayist Amy Gall as she unpacks the complex gender dynamics of women wanting to have sex using strap-ons that resemble penises. The wide-ranging essays reflect the diversity of their authors while sharing a captivating rawness and sincerity. The result is a striking and powerful compendium on the multifaceted nature of longing. (Feb.)