"Taut, lyrical, wise writing.”
– Claire Dederer, author of Love and Trouble
"Townsend drops us masterfully into a state of mind almost over the edge but never completely."
– Theo Pauline Nestor, author of Writing Is My Drink
“This memoir has . . . water and earth. Body and mind. Something like ‘a shard’ between.”
– Bhanu Kapil
Setting the Wire is a memoir of postpartum psychosis and a meditation on containment: what we hold and what holds us together. A lyric exploration of motherhood, mental illness, and familial ties, Sarah Townsend’s debut work weaves together personal anecdote, film, music, visual art, and psychology. Setting the Wire is a visceral reflection on the experience of fragmentation as a young psychotherapist and new mother.