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Pop Song

Nonfiction: Memoir
Unabridged   8.5 hour(s)
Publication date: 05/04/2021

National Book Critics Circle Award John Leonard Prize Finalist
A Buzzfeed Most Anticipated Book of the Year
A Literary Hub Most Anticipated Book of the Year
One of The Millions' Most Anticipated Books of the Year

Pop Song

Available from major retailers or BUY FROM AMAZON
Digital Download ISBN:9781696605618


Like a song that feels written just for you, Larissa Pham's debut work of nonfiction captures the imagination and refuses to let go.

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Product Description

Pop Song is a book about love and about falling in love—with a place, or a painting, or a person—and the joy and terror inherent in the experience of that love. Plumbing the well of culture for clues and patterns about love and loss—from Agnes Martin's abstract paintings to James Turrell's transcendent light works, and Anne Carson's Eros the Bittersweet to Frank Ocean's Blonde—Larissa Pham writes of her youthful attempts to find meaning in travel, sex, drugs, and art, before sensing that she might need to turn her gaze upon herself.

Pop Song is also a book about distances, near and far. As she travels from Taos, New Mexico, to Shanghai, China, and beyond, Pham meditates on the miles we are willing to cover to get away from ourselves, or those who hurt us, and the impossible gaps that can exist between two people sharing a bed.

Pop Song is a book about all the routes by which we might escape our own needs before finally finding a way home. There is heartache in this work, but Pham's electric ways of seeing create a perfectly fractured portrait of modern intimacy that is triumphant in both its vulnerability and restlessness.


"A tender heartache of a book, this memoir will make you feel seen in all the right ways." —K.W. Colyard, Bustle

“[Pop Song] tweezes from pop-culture ephemera—transcendent pieces of art from James Turrell's light sculptures to Frank Ocean's album Blond—to draw connections to distance and intimacy in travel, love, and loss . . . A smart book.” —Thrillist

"In a manner reminiscent of contemporaries Leslie Jamison and Jia Tolentino, Pham seamlessly blends the personal and the cultural, the confessional and the critical, the cerebral and the sentimental, to create an exciting and imaginative memoir. A vital playlist that hits all the right notes; readers will reach the end ready to hit repeat." —Kirkus Starred Review

"Pham reinvents the memoir in a stirring debut that explores the power of language, art, and love . . . This is a masterpiece." —Publishers Weekly Starred Review

"Pham brings intellectual power, sensuousness, and psychological astuteness to her encounters with art . . . A thrillingly frank and incisive self-portrait." —Booklist

Author Bio

Larissa Pham is an artist and writer in Brooklyn. Born in Portland, Oregon, she studied painting and art history at Yale University. She has written essays and criticism for the Paris Review Daily, the Nation, Art in America, Guernica, and elsewhere. She is also the author of Fantasian, a novella.