No Permanent Scars by Michael Hemery Now Available!


No Permanent Scars reads how creative nonfiction should read: Like fiction. Like nonfiction. Like memoir. Like humor. Like literature. Like life. It’s about childhood, adulthood, the neighborhood and what it means to be a kid, a parent, a teacher, a human. Michael Hemery illuminates an honest working-class existence, offering both the sober realities of class discrimination and the humor and love of family. Intertwined with serious issues such as suicide, alcoholism, abuse, religion, and immigration, Hemery also endures a painfully slow and often naive coming of age (he once mistook an obvious prostitute for an office supply store employee). This is going to be the best book you’ll read this year.

RANKED #4 on Amazon’s “Hot New Releases in American Literature Collections” List!

Literary Nonfiction. An Instant Classic.
(First edition, paperback or ebook, 292 pages.)

Praise for No Permanent Scars

“If you’ve ever considered naming your unborn child Magneto, thought your scraped knee was a period, been to a garlic-cleaning party, loved the song “Rock Me, Amadeus,” or especially if you haven’t, then you must read Michael Hemery’s marvelous No Permanent Scars. Ranging from poignant to hilarious to heartbreaking, Hemery’s essays recount his child’s self growing in a zig zag pattern into adolescence and adulthood, triumphing over the ‘misfires of memory’ in his quest to solve the mysteries he first unearthed when he was young.”

-Philip Graham, author of The Moon, Come to Earth: Dispatches from Lisbon

“The funny, thought-provoking and sometimes painful short essays in Michael Hemery’s book are individual gems; together they comprise a poignant and comic portrait of a boy becoming a man, finding his way within family and community and grappling with sexuality, spirituality, and love – not to mention a considerable video game addiction. This collection soars.”

-Laurie Alberts, author of Fault Line

“Michael Hemery’s No Permanent Scars employs exactly those qualities most lacking in contemporary writing – of whatever genre. Not only are these personal essays honest and emotionally available, they come out of a blue-collar background that we don’t expect to foster this kind of unguarded revelation. No Permanent Scars embodies a working-class empathy that popular culture seems unable to fathom. With urgent and compelling prose, Hemery explores a world that is too often hidden in plain sight, and does it fearlessly.”

-Sue William Silverman, author of Fearless Confessions: A Writer’ s Guide to Memoir

“What an exciting new writer Mike Hemery is! His prose is sharp and funny, yet his
vision is compassionate and deeply penetrates to the core of who we are: flawed and
fabulous human beings. This is a book to carry around with you, and read and reread not
just at the beach or the bedroom—but everywhere.”

-Samrat Upadhyay, author of Buddha’s Orphans

Book Clubs

The following book clubs have adopted No Permanent Scars:
Beyond David Sedaris Book Club
Bookaholics Book Club

If you’re book club would like to add NPS too, please contact us so we can announce it on our site.

Reader Reviews

I loved “No Permanent Scars” by Hemery. Within the first sixty pages I had cried and laughed out loud. The naiveté we all experience throughout life, the angst and teenage hormones, and the constant discovery as we try to figure out what we should be when we grow up. Not to mention the decision on parenthood…
Hemery does an excellent job in weaving a tale of reality that takes you through his triumphs and struggles and leaves you wanting more. I was so sad when I finished the book, and wished I had savored every page a little longer. This is a book you find reading out loud to whomever will listen to you just so you can share in the delight. I do wish Hemery would write these stories as fast as I can read them.
Do yourself a favor and read this book. You won’t be sorry.

-Kathleen E. Tesoriero

Check out all our reader reviews here.

About the Author:

Michael Hemery serves as the nonfiction editor for Hunger Mountain, and earned his MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio, with his wife Stacie Leatherman and son.

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