Farewell Transmission Notes from Hidden Spaces
In Farewell Transmission, Will McGrath guides us on a rambling quest into the enlightenment of other lives. Funny and heartbreaking, intimate and galvanizing, these essays venture from Yemen to Lesotho to the Bronx and beyond. We find Caravaggio at an Arizona homeless shelter and meet Elvis in rural Canada. We encounter diamond miners and professional wrestlers, night watchmen and righteous ex-cons—those wilderness prophets too frequently cropped from the picture. This is a book of hiddenness: of secret lives and ghost stories and obscure passions. Whether he’s unraveling the fraught history of a noose in Namibia or wandering the Driftless Area with a modern-day goatherd, McGrath is on an excavation into landscapes rarely seen. Like Leslie Jamison’s The Empathy Exams and John Jeremiah Sullivan’s Pulphead, these essays pulse with electric prose and vivid characters, seeking out the invisible forces that bind us across our wondrous and troubling planet. Farewell Transmission is a book about paying attention: to the concealed lives we encounter every day, and to the hidden worlds that exist within our own.