Book Reviews Archive

Picasso’s Tears

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Picasso’s Tears Wong May Octopus Books, June 2014 323 Pages $24 Buy: book Few books of poetry this year will have a more interesting back story than this one. Born in China in 1944 and raised in Singapore, Wong May came to the United States in the 1960s to

Talkativeness

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Talkativeness Michael Earl Craig Wave Books, April 2014 104 pages $18.00 Buy: book If you were among those persuaded by Thin Kimono (2010) that Michael Earl Craig was a poet to watch, you may consider your intuitions confirmed. Talkativeness dwells a little more deeply in the voice of that

Review: Dear Lil Wayne

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Dear Lil Wayne Lauren Ireland Magic Helicopter Press, April 2014 76 pages $11 Buy: book Joe Wenderoth’s Letters to Wendy’s celebrated its tenth anniversary this year. Sad to say, the book has not aged as gracefully as I had hoped. Every time I bring out a few selections from

Around the World in 209 Teams: A Review of Thirty-One Nil by James Montague

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Thirty-One Nil: On the Road With Football’s Outsiders–A World Cup Odyssey James Montague Bloomsbury, 2014, Bloomsbury 330 pages $18.00 Buy: book | ebook The work-ditching phenomena that our globe experienced throughout June and July, known as the World Cup, is really just the polished and gawked-at tip of the

The Pedestrians

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The Pedestrians Rachel Zucker Wave Books, April 2014 160 pages $18.00 Buy: book Rachel Zucker is a writer of daunting productivity. The Pedestrians is her sixth poetry collection since 2002; she has also published a memoir, co-authored a book about home birth with Arielle Greenberg, and co-edited two anthologies—this

Jimmy’s Blues and Other Poems

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Jimmy’s Blues and Other Poems James Baldwin Beacon Press, April 2014 120 pages $16.00 Buy: book | ebook The cover of Jimmy’s Blues and Other Poems features blurbs by none other than Toni Morrison and Maya Angelou, telling the world to read this book. I’ll be honest; I feel like I

For Today I Am a Boy

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For Today I Am a Boy Kim Fu Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, January 2014 256 pages $23.00 Buy: book | ebook Kim Fu opens her touching debut novel with a birth on the concrete floor of a butcher shop. This story is one that’s been passed down through the Huang

Some Day

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Some Day Shemi Zarhin Trans. Yardenne Greenspan New Vessel Press, October 2013 $16.99 450 pages What: Epic family drama With lots of: Food Also: Lust, love, loss, and longing Where: Tiberias, by Israel’s Sea of Galilee When: 1969-1983 Concerning: Shlomi, a child who develops near-magical culinary talents Hilik, his

Don’t Go See World War Z!

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Hollywood’s latest apocalyptic zombie romp, World War Z, could have been great. If it followed the lead that the book set out, it could have portrayed a nuanced view of life ten years after the world was overrun by zombies. When the book was turned into a movie, however,

Fellow Mortals

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Fellow Mortals Dennis Mahoney Farrar, Straus and Giroux, February 2013 288 pages $15.00 In the wild, there are plants whose seeds lay dormant for long stretches of time, passive and unchanging, until scarified by a fire hot enough to breach their outer layers—and to ravage the landscape around them—so