Sherlock in Shanghai

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How difficult is it for a story to move continents? One of Sherlock Holmes’ early Chinese translators, Cheng Xiaoqing, decided to find out, transplanting Sherlock Holmes from the foggy streets of nineteenth century London to his own Republic-era Shanghai.

Work, Love, and Partnership in Tove Jansson’s Fair Play

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Jansson’s 1989 novel serves as a particularly poignant antithesis of the “loner artist” narrative, dealing instead with a loving partnership that, rather than getting in the way of artistic work, lifts and expands it.

The Secret History’s Fates, Allusions, and Tragedies

By making her first novel’s characters classicists, Donna Tartt lets us in on the trick: that this book is, in essence, a modern day Greek tragedy.

“I Refuse to Review”: Literary Criticism and Kim Hyesoon’s Autobiography of Death

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Kim Hyesoon’s poetry collection recognizes the necessity of tracing lives erased and extinguished by political repression, patriarchy, and capitalist imperialism.

The Language of Trauma in Kevin Goodan’s Anaphora

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Kevin Goodan seizes on the persistent remembering that characterizes PTSD in his new book, creating an elegy that develops a kind of poetic logic of the fear system.

The Complicated Radicalism of Emily Wilson’s The Odyssey

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While a woman translating Homer’s epic is certainly a huge milestone, Wilson’s interpretation is a radical, fascinating achievement regardless of her gender.

The Resurgence of the Witch’s Tale

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Witch-hunting, Silvia Federici has written, developed in a world where communal relations were crumbling under the emergence of capitalism; from that moment on, the witch was the woman who escaped and defied patriarchal authority—and for this, she has always had to be punished.

Paradise Rot and the Art of Sexual Awakening

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In Marjam Idriss’ new translation of Jenny Hval’s novel, the biblical Fall of Man is reimagined within a narrative of queer female desire.

“Writing is its own country”: An Interview With Mark Haber

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Mark Haber is perhaps one of the most influential yet low-key of tastemakers in the book world. What Haber reads, people buy, because you know that when Haber recommends it, it is the real deal.

The Taiga Syndrome by Cristina Rivera Garza

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Garza's use of language and suspense is so skillful that she can remind us of the artifice of fiction in one moment, holding us up so we can see everything in its place, and in the next push our heads back beneath the surface of its conceit.