Fiction Archive

On Building Believable Characters in Fiction

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Before I picked up a copy of Offshore last month, it had been years since I read Penelope Fitzgerald, a British author who didn’t start writing until she was in her sixties. But the characters in this Booker Prize-winning novel caught my attention and I soon became completely emerged

Review: YEAR OF THE GOOSE by Carly J. Hallman

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In her debut novel Year of the Goose, Carly J. Hallman investigates whether or not unbelievable amounts of money can, in fact, buy happiness. (No. The answer is no. And here's the other thing: in this story, the goose is evil.)

Review: THE STARGAZER’S SISTER by Carrie Brown

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The Stargazer’s Sister Carrie Brown Pantheon, January 2016 352 pp; $25.95 Buy: hardcover | eBook Reviewed by Ellen Birkett Morris Here it is, the moon that has followed her everywhere through her childhood—racing between treetops to find her, darting over rooflines, appearing suddenly in the river at her feet or

Other Countries

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Sometimes I have to remind myself that the Black Writer In America is a cosmopolitan entity. The news can do that to you, even in February. Obviously there’s Harlem, and before that, there was the mass exodus from the South to the North, to experience life among people who

Challenging Cultural Norms: Contemporary British Women Authors

  It wasn’t until I was in my mid-twenties that I realized what I’d been searching for all along. An avid reader, I absorbed a variety of books during my childhood and adolescence. These were carefully screened by my well-meaning but stifling folks, who paled at the thought me

Review: THE WAKE by Paul Kingsnorth

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The Wake Paul Kingsnorth Graywolf, Sept 2015 365pp, $16 Buy: paperback Much has been made of Paul Kingsnorth’s The Wake, crowdfunded to publication in England last spring and longlisted for the Man Booker Award. Set during and after the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, The Wake follows a

In Bookstores Near You

  In her latest novel, Silence & Song, Melanie Rae Thon once again wanders into the world of devastation. The opening clip captures a fiery car accident, one that could have been avoided if only the father, the driver, had agreed to stop at a hotel for the night

Woolf at the Table: Good Dinner, Good Talk

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I have always been enchanted by Virginia Woolf and—being an avid cook and food writer myself—by gastronomic references in literature, both fiction and nonfiction. So when I learned about a book about the eating habits of the Bloomsbury set, of which Woolf was a member, I took notice. The

Book Review: MEMORY THEATER by Simon Critchley

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Memory Theater Simon Critchley Other Press, Nov 2015 112 pp, $15.95 Buy hardcover | eBook What I remember most from reading Thomas Harris’ Hannibal when it was first published in 1999 was not the graphic violence and strange character detour for which the book would be criticized; it was

Review: YOU TOO CAN HAVE A BODY LIKE MINE by Alexandra Kleeman

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YOU TOO CAN HAVE A BODY LIKE MINE Alexandra Kleeman Harper, August 2015 283 pp, $25.99 Buy hardcover | eBook | trade paperback | audio Seeming unmoored from both tangible responsibility and abstract constructs, like Mersualt in Camus’ The Stranger, “A”—the narrator of Alexandra Kleeman’s debut novel You Too