Lucas Mann turns his attention, tenderness, self-reflection, and humor to contemporary fatherhood. He looks closely at all the joys, frustrations, subtleties, and contradictions within an experience that often goes under-discussed. At once intimate and expansive, Mann chronicles his own life with his young daughter, but also looks outward to the cultural and political baggage that surrounds and permeates these everyday experiences. Moving through memoir, lyric essay, literary analysis, and pop culture criticism, Attachments treats the subject of fatherhood with the depth, curiosity, and vivid emotion that it deserves.
“Mann capably navigates the intricacies of cultural expectations and archetypes, global concerns, and his personal history. . . . He consistently offers sublime reflections on the nuances of parent-child relationships. A heartfelt, perceptive, profoundly introspective journey into the realm of parenthood.”—Kirkus, starred review
“Attachments is an intelligent and searching exploration of vulnerability in all its forms. Lucas Mann’s essays attain a naturalness of form without ever losing their penetrating insight and gorgeous sensibility. Some books punish as they reveal, but Mann’s generosity and clarity of vision, his humor and candor, make revelation into an occasion for connection. I was flattened and changed by this book. Simply beautiful.”—Brandon Taylor, author, Filthy Animals
“Lucas Mann's Attachments works itself into the fleshy folds I’ve spent most of my life avoiding. The writing and vision are somehow welcoming and spectacular, yet the book’s greatest achievement might lay within the portals of entry created by Mann’s use of the comic. Attachments found me at the perfect time in my life.”—Kiese Laymon, author, Heavy: An American Memoir
“The essays in Lucas Mann’s Attachments are fierce and funny and agile, following the so-called ‘smallest’ moments of daily experience to the subterranean inquiries these moments have always been attached to, about the entanglements between intimacy and transformation, past and prior selves, culture and selfhood. (Which is to say: Come for the playground soap operas, stay for the acute observations about social performance!) Mann’s interest in attachment itself has to do not just with love but with identity: what versions of ourselves we are most attached to, and what parts of us emerge when we betray these attachments. I love Mann’s writing for its company and its candor, and especially for its ruthless battle with the twin demons of self-pity and self-satisfaction. His razor gaze slices through righteousness like a mandolin’s blade slivers fruit; exposing those wry, quick-silver feelings—often embarrassing, always illuminating—tucked into the crevices of the more familiar emotions we are most comfortable making visible, even to ourselves; but always, always the animating engine of this rigor is love.”—Leslie Jamison, author, The Empathy Exams: Essays
“Lucas Mann’s insights on the hilarity, devastation, and absolute weirdness of raising a child make this a book I want to discuss with everyone. It’s so sharp and beautifully written.”—Beth Nguyen, author, Owner of a Lonely Heart
“Lucas Mann’s essays are so funny, so endearing, so companionable, so relentless in their quest for self-knowledge and more nuanced, more generous understanding. Attachments reveals a mind that is always working on something, finding ways to make everything interesting, be it fandom or lost promise, social media and ‘the dad space,’ comfort TV or sleep training, the ‘cliché factory’ of parenthood in general. It may be ‘impossible to feel remarkable in this world,’ and yet life, in its particulars, is ‘thrilling’—‘thrilling!’”—Elisa Gabbert, author, Normal Distance
“Naked and tender, Attachments is an eyes-wide-open exploration of everything that matters. In this twelve-essay collection that spans parenthood, culture, art, and community, Lucas Mann has embraced far-ranging and clear-eyed observation that’s as astute as is it honest. A special, singular book that invites us all to participate fully in the suffering, beautiful world.”—Rachel Yoder, author, Nightbitch