Category: Reviews

“A Back and Forth Page Turner: Edan Lepucki’s ‘Woman No. 17’ Review”
Edan Lepucki’s debut novel, California, became a pre-order sensation in large part due to the turmoil between Amazon and Hachette Book...
“A Back and Forth Page Turner: Edan Lepucki’s ‘Woman No. 17’ Review”
“The Bonds that Break Us: Daniel Magariel’s One of the Boys Review”
If the goal of a fiction writer is to say much with few words, Daniel Magariel’s debut novel, One of the Boys, is a near perfect...
“The Bonds that Break Us: Daniel Magariel’s One of the Boys Review”
“A Life in Theory: A Review of Mark Greif’s Against Everything”
In 2004, a group of friends founded the literary magazine n + 1. They wanted to publish a brand of criticism that they believed didn’t...
“A Life in Theory: A Review of Mark Greif’s Against Everything”
“Under the Biome: T.C. Boyle’s The Terranauts Review”
There were times when reading The Terranauts where I felt like I had read this story before. It wasn’t that it necessarily had a...
“Under the Biome: T.C. Boyle’s The Terranauts Review”
“Ambitions and Obsessions: Benjamin Rybeck’s The Sadness Review”
It’s always intriguing to read novels that utilize different forms of entertainment as plot devices and methods for relaying themes....
“Ambitions and Obsessions: Benjamin Rybeck’s The Sadness Review”
“Unfathomable Scope: Emily Nemens’ Butcher Papers Review”
One of the more intriguing, yet under-read, forms of literature is the chapbook. A staple of popular culture at the outset of the printing...
“Unfathomable Scope: Emily Nemens’ Butcher Papers Review”
“Backgammon on the Brain: Jonathan Lethem’s A Gambler’s Anatomy Review”
In a recent New Yorker interview discussing his story, “A Gentleman’s Game,” Jonathan Lethem discusses his fascination with one of...
“Backgammon on the Brain: Jonathan Lethem’s A Gambler’s Anatomy Review”
“I Am The One Who Knocks: Bryan Cranston’s A Life in Parts Review”
“Building a character is like building a house. Without a solid foundation, a base, you’re screwed. You’re going to collapse. An...
“I Am The One Who Knocks: Bryan Cranston’s A Life in Parts Review”
“Loss and Longing: Brit Bennett’s The Mothers Review
Each year is typically filled with a smattering of good debut novels, a handful or two of great ones, and a couple of undeniable standouts....
“Loss and Longing: Brit Bennett’s The Mothers Review
“Some Sort of Genius: Nell Zink’s Private Novelist Review”
It’s not common for a literary writer to release multiple books in the same year or even in the span of a couple of years. So, naturally,...
“Some Sort of Genius: Nell Zink’s Private Novelist Review”
“Hard to Quit: Nell Zink’s Nicotine Review”
It shouldn’t have been surprising that Nell Zink’s follow-up to her critically claimed commercial debut, Mislaid, turned out to be...
“Hard to Quit: Nell Zink’s Nicotine Review”
“Compact and Boundless: Paulette Jiles News of the World Review”
It seems like every four or five years a novel comes around that is small in page count and physical size that somehow ends up feeling as...
“Compact and Boundless: Paulette Jiles News of the World Review”
“Here He Is: Jonathan Safran Foer Here I Am Review”
The first novel from Jonathan Safran Foer in eleven years is an unexpected reading experience. Foer seems like he has been a part of the...
“Here He Is: Jonathan Safran Foer Here I Am Review”
Joy Williams’ The Visiting Privilege: Stories for the Devastated
In a recent interview with The New York Times, Joy Williams was asked what she wanted to receive from a great story. Her reply was simple:...
Joy Williams’ The Visiting Privilege: Stories for the Devastated
“Stephen King The Short Story Writer: The Bazaar of Bad Dreams Review”
Stephen King is first and foremost known as a novelist. If you somehow haven’t read one of his books over the past fifty years, chances...
“Stephen King The Short Story Writer: The Bazaar of Bad Dreams Review”
“Joyce Carol Oates’ The Lost Landscape is a Memoir for The Ages”
Memoirs written by famous writers are viewed by readers as special gifts, invites into the personal lives of novelists and short story...
“Joyce Carol Oates’ The Lost Landscape is a Memoir for The Ages”
Bill Clegg’s Did You Ever Have A Family: Interconnected Stories of Heartbreak and Hope
In an interview with The New York Times regarding the birth of his debut novel, Did You Ever Have A Family, Bill Clegg remarked, “I...
Bill Clegg’s Did You Ever Have A Family: Interconnected Stories of Heartbreak and Hope
Jesse Eisenberg’s Ambitious Foray Into Fiction: Bream gives me hiccups & other stories
Jesse Eisenberg, recently in the spotlight for portraying journalist David Lipsky alongside Jason Segel as David Foster Wallace in the...
Jesse Eisenberg’s Ambitious Foray Into Fiction: Bream gives me hiccups & other stories
The New Yorker Short Story Round-up: August, 2015
Book reviewers, given their title, generally review novels, short story collections, nonfiction, biographies, memoirs, essay collections,...
The New Yorker Short Story Round-up: August, 2015
“A Review of The Best Small Fictions 2015”
Having studied creative writing in both the US and the UK recently, I can attest that “small fictions,” to borrow the pithy designation...
“A Review of The Best Small Fictions 2015”
A Review of 6 Books on the Craft of Fiction
Here’s the skinny on six of the “how-to” books for fiction writers in my bookcase – three on fiction generally and...
A Review of 6 Books on the Craft of Fiction
A Review of Elizabeth Harris’ Mayhem
Mayhem by Elizabeth Harris. October 2015. Winner of the Gival Press Novel Award. When the author, Elizabeth Harris, was eleven years old,...
A Review of Elizabeth Harris’ Mayhem
A Review of Two Books on Revision Techniques
My bookcase holds two books that deal with revising and editing fiction: Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and...
A Review of Two Books on Revision Techniques
“The Art of the Book Review”
I just got off the phone with my friend, L. Marie, who recently created a blog, “Thoughts about writing and life.”...
“The Art of the Book Review”
“A Review of Darrin Doyle’s The Dark Will End the Dark”
The Dark Will End the Dark by Darrin Doyle (Tortoise Books, 2015)  Darrin Doyle’s collection of stories, The Dark Will End the Dark, is...
“A Review of Darrin Doyle’s The Dark Will End the Dark”
A Review of Flash Fiction International
Flash Fiction International: Very Short Stories from Around the World (W. Norton & Company); editors: James Thomas, Robert Shapard,...
A Review of Flash Fiction International
A Review of Leesa Cross-Smith’s Every Kiss a War
Every Kiss a War by Leesa Cross-Smith (Mojave River Media) In Leesa Cross-Smith’s short story collection, Every Kiss a War, 27 stories...
A Review of Leesa Cross-Smith’s Every Kiss a War
A Review of Lydia Davis’ Can’t and Won’t
Can’t and Won’t by Lydia Davis (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)   In Lydia Davis’s new collection of short stories,...
A Review of Lydia Davis’ Can’t and Won’t
A Review of Blake Kimzey’s Families Among Us
Families Among Us by Blake Kimzey (Black Lawrence Press, 2014) One need only look at the back cover of Blake Kimzey’s Families...
A Review of Blake Kimzey’s Families Among Us
A Review of Sheldon Lee Compton’s Where Alligators Sleep
Where Alligators Sleep bySheldon Lee Compton (Foxhead Books, 2014) How to sum up a life: You start with the beginning—with peace and...
A Review of Sheldon Lee Compton’s Where Alligators Sleep
A Review of Praying Drunk
Praying Drunk by Kyle Minor (Sarabande Books, 2014) Does God exist? The question is either a non-sequitur or deeply important depending on...
A Review of Praying Drunk
A Review of Kirsty Logan’s The Rental Heart and Other Fairytales
The Rental Heart and Other Fairytales by Kirsty Logan (Salt Publishing, Cromer, Nofolk, UK, 2014) Your body is the story of...
A Review of Kirsty Logan’s The Rental Heart and Other Fairytales
A Review of Stuart Dybeck's Ecstatic Cahoots
Ecstatic Cahoots by Stuart Dybeck (Farrar, Straus, Giroux., 2014) Stuart Dybek, an author who has been called a living master of the...
A Review of Stuart Dybeck's Ecstatic Cahoots
A Review of Peter Markus’s We Make Mud
We Make Mud by Peter Markus (Dzanc Books, 2011) As a dedicated (albeit obsessive) fan and supporter of Peter Markus's works of...
A Review of Peter Markus’s We Make Mud