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Reviews for Bianca

The Washington Post

"Eugenia Leigh's new collection, 'Bianca,' is hard to read — but harder to look away from. In these fierce, intimate poems, Leigh writes about motherhood complicated by mental illness and post-traumatic stress. 'I expected to die much younger than I am now,' she writes in a piece called 'Cruelty.' Every one of these poems is a victory, artistic and personal."

— Ron Charles

Publishers Weekly

"In her piercing and fearlessly vulnerable second collection, Leigh examines how to navigate a life of motherhood and illness in the aftermath of childhood abuse, providing a testament of unparalleled honesty. ... The result is a sensitive, insightful, and commanding portrait of motherhood and survival."

— Publishers Weekly

Poetry Foundation

"The book moves from a fear of genetic determinism to a recognition of loved ones who refuse to abandon her, even when 'cursed at and punched.' .... A husband, a son, friends, sisters, and strangers (including a taxi driver profoundly forgiving of being vomited on) show care for 'Bianca,' and eventually lead the text’s 'Eugenia' to love her various selves..."

— Cindy Juyoung Ok

The Rumpus

"While Leigh's collection invokes the DSM-V, it's less interested in the diagnostic process than in the human capacity for surprise. By engaging with prose structures—the essay, the zuihitsu—Leigh grounds the disclosure of trauma in the past tense, not to lessen these actions but to create a speaker capable of constructing a new kind of self-gaze. ...Leigh's collection sustains an imperfect and idealized self—plural and human and no less miraculous."

— Asa Drake

Washington Independent Review of Books

"Between [her first book] and now, Leigh, like me, also birthed a child. With that experience came a full-fledged emotional and poetic fruiting only hinted at in her first book. Leigh has lived in the intervening years, and it pulsates off every page of her new collection, Bianca, which is both a primal scream and an exquisite catharsis."

— Angela María Spring


MS. Magazine

"Noisy, unrelenting, healing."

Karla J. Strand


Book Riot

"Liked Dyscalculia: A Love Story of Epic Miscalculation (by Camonghne Felix)? Read Bianca by Eugenia Leigh. ...Pink sticky flags mark Leigh's lines, stanzas, and pages. In the third and final part, 'Bipolar II Disorder: Second Evaluation (Zuihitsu for Bianca)' begins: 'We all called her Bianca. My fever, my havoc, my tilt. Bianca trashed the kitchen.' How much I needed this book in my life, and — like I listened to Dyscalculia back to back — I trust I'll reread it soon."

— Connie Pan


The Dawn Review

"Even so, life manages to crawl out from this cycle of ruin. It takes the form of unanswered prayers to an inattentive god, leading the speaker to turn inward and name herself as the ultimate divinity. Bianca is incredibly intimate, ending as the speaker sheds the weight of the past and returns to a rediscovered home."

— Evan Wang and Ziyi Yan

RHINO Reviews

"Leigh's brilliant line break ... continues a dance she started on the first page with her sharp designs. The segue into the phrase 'I've known' ... is one of the extraordinary moves she offers throughout the book. It is a push-and-pull process, expressed with lucidity and with the rawness of wounds."

— Lúcia Leão

If you'd like a review copy of Bianca, please contact

Four Way Books at


Recent Interviews (2023)

(See Below for Select Past Interviews)

Postpartum Production Podcast: S2 Ep. 11 (Podcast): The Transformative Power of Poetry and Parenting: How Eugenia Leigh's Creative Process Rewrites the Page Itself with Kaitlin Solimine

Rob McLennan's Blog: 12 or 20 Questions with Eugenia Leigh by Rob McLennan

Frontier Poetry: Poet in the Mirror: Eugenia Leigh by Megan Kim

WLIW / Heart of the East End with Gianna Volpe (Podcast): "Eugenia Leigh"


MUTHA Magazine: "Our hopes for healing must be bigger than ourselves": An Interview with Poet Eugenia Leigh by Cheryl E. Klein

Poets in Conversation (Video): Patricia Smith & Eugenia Leigh hosted by Allison Adair at A Mighty Blaze

WNYC / All of It with Alison Stewart (Podcast): "Eugenia Leigh's Sophomore Collection, Bianca"

Poetry Northwest: "Labeling, Covering, Converging Confessing": A Conversation with Eugenia Leigh by Alexa Luborsky

Write or Die Magazine: Eugenia Leigh: On Excavating the Past, Writing as a Safeguard, Dialectical Thinking, and Her New Book 'Bianca' by Erica Abbott

StarkMarkings: S2 EP. 4 (Podcast): "Stalemates and Standstills: Why Getting Stuck Moves Us Forward" with Angelena Bougiamas

Select Past Interviews (2014 - 2022)

Brooklyn Poets Poet of the Week Interview: Eugenia Leigh (2022)

The Poetry Magazine Podcast: Su Cho and Eugenia Leigh in Conversation (2021)

The Lit Fantastic Podcast: Eugenia Leigh (Worldbuilding & Fantasy) with Neil Aitken (2017)

National Book Critics Circle Small Press Spotlight: Eugenia Leigh by Rigoberto Gonzalez (2014)

Best American Poetry Blog APIA Series: Eugenia Leigh Poem & Interview by Sally Wen Mao (2014)

Select Reviews for Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows

American Book Review

"Eugenia Leigh is a brave, young poet who has many worlds to split open ahead of her."

— Shaindel Beers

Muzzle Magazine

"In Leigh's world, survival doesn't mean absolution or release but the ability to create something new. Imagination is a tool for liberation, allowing the speaker and characters throughout the collection to endure; prepared to make something more powerful than the retelling of tragedy, as in the collection's last line ("The Happy Couple"): "For now, we sing."

— Kendra DeColo

PANK Magazine

"...throughout Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows, the reader must reckon with the impossibility of unceasing grace in the face of violence, a grace which Leigh captures with a sharp-edged, heart-splitting beauty. She asks us what it means to endure on earth, instead of in the stars, after living trauma that's determined enough to end us."

— Rachel Mennies

On the Seawall /

"Leigh's poems nakedly envision a world of complicated hope, and in doing so, create a foundation for that bridge over which we pass to remain intact, at least for a little longer. Leigh asks that we all participate in its remaking if we are willing to do the breaking."

— Tarfia Faizullah

American Microreviews

"By the end of the collection, I can't help feeling the same echoes of devastation and resolve. These are brave poems and a remarkable debut. I look forward to reading more from Leigh. Her words feel important, and they should be read with the care and love that good poems deserve."

— Sabastian H. Paramo


The Rumpus

"It's certain all of us will find both pain and beauty throughout our lives. But when we want to contemplate the configuration of their entwinement, and connect with our common humanity—that's when we can turn to poetry collections like Eugenia Leigh's Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows."

— Kenji C. Liu

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