In this visually rich, multigenerational lyric essay, journalist Mary Ann Hogan reflects on a life of letters and her relationship to her late father, Bill Hogan, well-known literary editor at the San Francisco Chronicle, whom John Steinbeck once dubbed “an old and valued friend.” Circle Way is a bittersweet memoir of a father, daughter, and a prominent California family. Written in an evocative, expressionistic style, this work of creative nonfiction flutters somewhere between journalism and poetry.
Published by Wonderwell
Release Date: February 15, 2022
Available in hardcover and ebook
$40.95 CAD / $29.99 USD
A bittersweet memoir of a father, daughter, and a prominent California family
At the heart of the story, Mary Ann grapples with identity, family, and the creative calling. Sifting through her father’s notebooks after his death, she discovers a man whose unrealized dreams echo her own. Eager to learn more about her family even as she wrestles with terminal illness, Mary Ann explores the fascinating cast of characters who were her forebearers. We meet the author’s great grandfather, an Oakland lumber baron who lost his fortune in the crash of ’29, and a great uncle who was sent to San Quentin for two deaths some say he may not have caused.
Richly illustrated with Bill Hogan’s original sketches and watercolors, this poignant and absorbing tale is an immersive feast for anyone interested in literature, history, and the often-mysterious facets of family.
Mary Ann Hogan
The late Mary Ann Hogan was an award-winning journalist and teacher whose credits included The New York Times, The Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Oakland Tribune, and Mother Jones magazine. She specialized in personal essays, and for six years was syndicated by the Los Angeles Times. She lectured nationally on writing through the American Press Institute and the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. She taught writing at San Francisco State University, Palm Beach State College, and Florida Atlantic University, where she earned a Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction.
Praise for Circle Way
“History, poetry, art, and family come together in Mary Ann Hogan’s loving exploration of her journalist father’s life. Her quest to understand this gifted and complicated man is a delight to read, leaving us with a rich portrait of not one, but two consequential lives.”
Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor, PBS NewsHour
“One can’t help comparing Mary Ann Hogan to Joan Didion. The prose is subtle; the insights, piercing. Circle Way … speaks eloquently to what goes unsaid in any family.”
Susan Stern, director, Bad Attitude: The Art of Spain Rodriguez
“A love letter not only to the author’s literary father, but also to the vanished lives and sensibilities of an earlier California … it’s a bittersweet pleasure to share her journey.”
Sarah Pollock, writer and editor
“Circle Way is a gorgeous and refreshing exploration of writing and family. Hogan’s masterfully woven memoir offers new ways to consider the stories of our lives—what appear to be gaps in knowledge are ultimately paths to understanding.”
Kate Schmitt, author of Singing Bones
Press, Awards, and More
It’s our pleasure to announce we’re publishing a new memoir, Circle Way, by the late award-winning journalist Mary Ann Hogan. The book will be in stores on February 15, 2022.
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