Published by Trinity University Press

Satellite, New Book of Essays Coming in 2025

Ringtail in a tree backlit by moonlight

Satellite, New Book of Essays Coming in 2025

Trinity University Press, publisher of Dear America: Letters of Hope, Habitat, Defiance, and Democracy, as well as place-based collections by such authors as Barry Lopez, Sandra Cisneros, Kathleen Dean Moore, Janisse Ray, Rebecca Solnit, and William Stafford, will publish Simmons Buntin’s first creative nonfiction book, Satellite: Essays of Fatherhood and Home, Near and Far.

Satellite is a collection of 16 essays written over a span of nearly two decades. The essays are fundamentally about belonging—in place, in time, in family, in community. Deeply researched, written in both lyrical and narrative styles, and rich in family, history, and place, the essays range throughout the Desert Southwest, on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border, and as far afield as Mount St. Helens, eastern Montana, northern Vermont, Sweden, and even the moon (if a telescope atop Kitt Peak counts). The essays explore the challenges and beauty of raising a family and creating more sustainable communities in the diverse cultural and ecological landscape that is the Sonoran Desert—and, more broadly, in any American landscape. In these essays near and far, many questions are pursued: How broadly should community be defined? How do we realize heritage in an age of globalization? How do we define beauty in our communities and natural landscapes and so—realizing we are drawn from that same material, if not mystical, source—in ourselves? What forms may grace take, and how as parents can we pass that onto our children? How do we find hope and renewal following personal and landscape trauma? What can community teach about being a better father, and what can fatherhood teach about creating a more sustainable and resilient life?

If every generation has its great challenge, then ours is finding a way to exist equitably in the world without exhausting our natural and cultural resources. Exploring how we can create such a belonging for ourselves, and for communities both human and nonhuman, is our essential work and responsibility. Fortunately, it is a responsibility both shared and rewarding, funny and phenomenal, for at every turn there is a new discovery, a new insight, a new integration between ourselves and the world around us that culminates, when we succeed, in a vibrant sense of place—a balance between the built and natural environments (and the beings that inhabit them) that enables us not only to survive, but to thrive.

Satellite will also feature 17 black-and-white photographs taken by the author. It is scheduled to publish in February 2025, and will be supported by in-person and online readings and other promotional events, a dedicated web page on SimmonsBuntin.com with resources for readers and book clubs, and excerpts and reviews in select publications.