If All the World and Love Were Young

If All the World and Love Were Young

'Every poem in this book is a marvel. Taken all together they make up a work of almost miraculous depth and beauty' Sally Rooney

'A poetry debut fit to compare with Seamus Heaney. This wonderful long poem is up there with the greats' Sunday Times

Shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best First Collection

When Stephen Sexton was young, video games were a way to slip through the looking glass; to be in two places at once; to be two people at once. In these poems about the death of his mother, this moving, otherworldly narrative takes us through the levels of Super Mario World, whose flowered landscapes bleed into our world, and ours, strange with loss, bleed into it. His remarkable debut is a daring exploration of memory, grief and the necessity of the unreal.

Title:If All the World and Love Were Young
ISBN:9780141990026
Format Type:

    If All the World and Love Were Young Reviews

  • Dannii Elle

    "for no reason except for being alone I try to scream into the wildness of the world.I make no sound: the flakes of snow are noisier in the fallingthe berries are loud with colour on the back windowsi...

  • Rebecca

    This is a highly original hybrid of video game imagery and a narrative about the final illness of his mother, who died in 2012. As a child the poet was obsessed with Super Mario World. He overlays the...

  • Evie Braithwaite

    If All the World and Love Were Young is a collection of poems structured around Nintendo’s classic Super Mario World. In this otherworldly narrative, Stephen takes us not only through the game’s l...

  • rosamund

    I’ve been looking forward to this collection for months, having admired Stephen Sexton’s work since I first heard him read from his pamphlet, Oils. I was not disappointed! This is an imaginative, ...

  • Paul

    Sometimes a way of coping with events in the real world is to head back to the things that gave you comfort in the past. For Stephen Sexton this means heading to the world of Super Mario Kart, where h...

  • Pickle Farmer

    This was ok. I think I like the idea of this book more than the actual content contained within. It's a collection of poems based on Super Mario and is mainly about a mother's death from cancer and me...

  • Zeba Clarke

    I really loved this collection. I read a review which intrigued me because the book is about the poet's memories of the years when as a teenager he played Super Mario World whilst his mother was going...

  • Lenin_lover_69

    This is very beautiful and moving and sad, it undulates just like grief.'And if you find some day dear friend my sad head upon your shouldersgo out into the world and say world it's been so long world...

  • Konstantin R.

    [rating = B]Dealing with the death of his mother, Stephen Sexton blends Mario and the sadness of loss in interesting ways. Although sometimes the blend was too close-knit, once you got the rhythm of t...

  • Lucy Howard-Taylor

    One of those rare and precious books: the world seems different after reading it....