Miranda July’s Non-Fiction Work Sheds Light on the Socially Shadowed

While The First Bad Man may be stealing all the attention on the literary front for Miranda July as of late, It Chooses You, published almost four years earlier, is a phenomenal work of image, interview, and non-fiction writing that has been flying under the radar for years. Released after her critically acclaimed collection of short stories, No One Belongs Here More Than You, It Chooses You examines the lives of Los Angeles misfits through a series of personal narratives and in-person interviews paired with raw (but beautiful) images captured by Brigitte Sire.

The book follows July on a journey through writer’s block as she makes visits to the homes of those who have placed dated and bizarre ads in the Los Angeles PennySaver. The story climaxes with a series of events that are obliquely human and utterly Miranda July. Along the way, readers are taken into the periphery of social misfits, introducing them to a slew of characters that are as unforgettable as they are damaged. It Chooses You is a work like no other, and a highlight of July’s literary career.