"These brilliant poems illuminate those spaces between sincerity and mischief, vulnerability and audacity. Nguyen’s irrepressible warmth is fueled by honesty, longing, and curiosity. ‘Everything burns’ in this amazing collection. Not Here blazes and enlightens.”
“Hieu Minh Nguyen’s fabulous book of poems, Not Here, is just one of those books you can’t stop reading.”
“To say that there is such wisdom and such a loving dominion in these poems might hide the ferocious wit and candor also found here, but I’ll say it loud anyway: this book is triumphant in its beautiful and sometimes painful reckoning...”
“The worlds Nguyen summons and dismisses in these poems are mesmerizing, like the visions of a sorcerer, but not because they’re magical—because they’re real. All of them animated by a wild wit that feels like it could throw a car like a baseball.”
"This Way To the Sugar explodes with a longing to hold the past and future, make them dance and give birth to Hieu Minh Nguyen, who the whole time has been spinning each line into impossible being."
—Ed Bok Lee
"His work is crisp and brave and incredibly alive. Each poem will thump inside you like a new heart."
"If it’s unclear how Nguyen survived the wreckage, at least we know why: beauty, Eros, the body. “I am typing with my tongue / I am so hard,” the poet taunts, declaring, “I have built myself / a safer body,” laying bare the sweet physicality of speech."
"Hieu's book should be required reading. He is patient with his ghosts, letting each sing its song of broken glass and burning houses and bathroom rugs as band aids for black mold."