The Poison that Purifies You—press


In this blog post for Antioch Review’s ar_su14The Story Behind the Story series, Kadetsky discusses her experiences as a journalist at the close of the brutal civil war in Guatemala and how they informed her short story “It Was Only Clay,” set during the cataclysmic earthquake of 1976: “In 1994, The Village Voice sent me to cover a story set in a small highlands village in the Cuchumatantes mountains of Guatemala called San Cristóbal Verapaz….”


In Kadetsky’s post about The Poison… on the My Book, The Movie blog, Jon Voight, Judy Davis, and Gael García Bernal take starring roles in the imaginary film version of The Poison…. See the blog post here. “Casting begins with Kim Novak, and to match eras loosely, she plays alongside Jon Voight, in his Midnight Cowboy iteration, in the short story ‘Loup Garou.’ Castingby2-600x274Novak, hair curled and dyed black, plays the part-native French Canadian former waitress Cecile. Jon Voight plays across from her as John, who, in the writing was named for, yes, Jon Voight. He wears tight white jeans, a cowboy hat and a Western snap shirt and drinks straight from Cecile’s whiskey glass in a strip club. Need more be said?”

A review of The Poison… in Prime Number: A Journal of Distinctive Poetry and Prose, by Clifford Garstang: Banner“The overall effect of these gloomy, open-ended stories is to suggest that longing is a perpetual element of the human condition. Which is not to say that happiness is out of reach. But, like Jack in the collection’s title story, we gain power over our disappointments by ingesting them and making them part of us. Despite the darkness, The Poison that Purifies You is a fine book that serious readers will find deeply satisfying.”

A review of The Poison… in Necessary Fiction: “[T]he stories in this accomplished collection are densely populated, like the cities in which most of them take place, and touched with a certain skepticism about social life—there so many others, and they are all so close—that has marked the literature of urban modernity since Baudelaire.”

Rachel Cantor reads The Poison and writes it up, in her post here on The Millions. “I divide this year’s shortlist into three categories: Tales Well Told, Fun Stuff, and Miracles of Voice.” The “transporting” The Poison… fits into Tales Well Told. Thanks Rach!

A review of The Poison… in the JMWW blog, or perhaps more of a summary. Speaking of the title piece in the collection, Robert Boucheron writes: “The story presents fine sketches of the two characters, both dreamers. Are they waiting for ransom? Lying side by side in the ‘safe house,’ will they have sex? Their situation remains unresolved, but the comic interlude is complete.”

The Poison…: the playlist:
Kadetsky’s post on David Gutowski’s LargeHeartedBoy’s Book Notes blog, in which Patti Smith, PJ Harvey, Tom Waits, and Tomaso Albinoni intermingle. Stream the playlist here.


A pick:
The Poison that Purifies You
was named a best under the radar read for fall alongside such authors JM Tyree, Darcey Steinke, and others. download (1)

November events:
-Thursday Nov 20, 2014, Pete’s Candy Store, Pete’s Reading Series, 7:30pm, 709 Lorimer St., Brooklyn, NY
-Sunday November 23, 7pm, KGB Bar, 85 E. 4th St., Manhattan

Kadetsky’s confessions of a procrastinator, more politely titled “The Art of Distraction,” in the October Glimmer Train bulletin.

coverthumbThis follows the appearance of her short story “What We Saw” in the Fall 2014 issue of the magazine.


An interview about The Poison that Purifies You with the inimitable Tobias Carroll at Vol. 1 Brooklyn.


Guatemala, an earthquake, an archaeologist off his meds. Find out what the cataclysm wreaks in the short story “It Was Only Clay,” forthcoming in the summer 2014 issue of Antioch Review.

And the official announcement, Elizabeth’s short story collection has won the Paul Bowles Prize in the short story at C&R Press and will be published alongside the press’s wonderful authors, including Anis Shivani, John Estes, Terence Hawkins, Sybil Baker, Virgil Suarez. Thanks Chad Prevost for picking this manuscript!POISON cover

Preview: new fiction in The Weekly Rumpus. Get ready! India, Italy, a mysterious statue from 19th C America. The full story is available in the magazine, downloadable at The Weekly Rumpus app





Second place win at Glimmer Train. A heat wave, a fire, a missing twin. The Fiction Open. “What We Saw” will be published in their August 2014 issue.

The Pushcart-winning story “The Poison That Purifies You” was reprinted at the Storyville app. Click here to link to the app and for some background on how this work of fiction came to be: “[My housemate in India] had been one of four Westerners at the center of an international hostage crisis; my housemate escaped largely by chance, but one of the four hadn’t made it out alive. The strangest thing about my housemate’s story had been the sympathy he felt for his kidnapper. He said the man was at heart a good person, manipulated by higher ups.”