Eric Tran's Mouth, Sugar, and Smoke is one of Lambda Literary's Most Anticipated titles for July alongside A Boy in the City by S. Yarberry (Deep Vellum Publishing), Bimboland by Erin Taylor (Archway Editions), Housebreak by Shareen Murayama (Bad Betty Press), Rookie by Caroline Bird (Carcanet) and Swan Hammer by Maggie Graber (Michigan State University Press).
Mouth, Sugar, and Smoke howls and hungers. This collection, which won the Diode Editions 2021 Full-Length Book Prize, grieves a lover lost to addiction and also swims in the intoxication of desire. While the poems in Mouth, Sugar, and Smoke portray a yearning for intimacy, they create spaces to experience the duality of pleasure and mourning. Even when Tran writes under formal constraint, like the crown of sonnets, these poems struggle and break and, in doing so, explore queer and transformative ways of wanting and being wanted.