Michael Rumaker, John Porcellino, Emma Bee Bernstein, and many more...


Memory Unearthed: An Interview with Michael Rumaker
Interviewed by Leverett T. Smith, Jr.
In all his work, Rumaker demonstrates a keen ear for mellifluous language and an affinity for narrative clarity, yet at the same time he seeks to excavate what lies beneath the surface.

The Illustrated Thoreau: An Interview with John Porcellino
Interviewed by Nate Pritts
The link between Thoreau and Porcellino is found in the creative work they produce—work that is decidedly American while endeavoring to reshape what the term “American” means.

Burning Behind the Unnamable: An Interview with David F. Hoenigman
Interviewed by David Moscovich
David F. Hoenigman's Burn Your Belongings eschews a standard format, but the form which remains begs the reader to blur the eyes, step back, and view the work visually, skipping lines as the eye would cast over an atomic mosaic.


Belladonna Elders Series #4: Tribute to Emma Bee Bernstein
Essay by Ellen Kennedy Michel
A new book collects writings and remembrances of this spirited and fiercely intelligent young woman.

The Woodman in the Gossamer: Mere Anarchy and the Literary Humor of Woody Allen
Essay by Louis Phillips
Allen’s new collection of essays, Mere Anarchy, rivals the work of greats Twain, Thurber, and Perelman.

(Was) Widely Unavailable: Awful Disclosures of the Hotel Dieu Nunnery of Montreal
Essay by Spencer Dew
First published in 1836, Monk’s sensational memoir about the lascivious goings-on in a Canadian nunnery reveals the enduring public appetite for an arousing true story.

Noteworthy Reprint: Wait for Me at the Bottom of the Pool: The Writings of Jack Smith
Essay by Spencer Dew
This collection of essays by experimental filmmaker Smith show that the wonder and gorgeousness of art, as he saw it, was in making glory out of junk.

From the Backlist: The Dollmaker’s Ghost
Essay by Michele Battiste
Levis confronts the mother of all fears, death, in this deeply personal, classic collection of poems.


Khirbet Khizeh
S. Yizhar
Named for the small village where it is set, Khirbet Khizeh is a stirring homage to the land of Israel and a damning reflection of the birth of that nation. Reviewed by Jeff Waxman

To Siberia
Per Petterson
To Siberia depicts a woman trying to find a place in the world, a place that even at sixty years of age she is unable to ascertain as she looks back on her life. Reviewed by Salvatore Ruggiero

The Way Through Doors
Jesse Ball
Composed of discrete small stories suspended within the whole like seltzery bubbles, The Way Through Doors is a Sheherazade-like tale in which the storyteller must weave tales in order to keep the listener alive. Reviewed by Micaela Morrissette

Divertimenti and Variations
Heimito von Doderer
A collection of “apprentice pieces” from the acclaimed Austrian novelist explores the precariousness of existence. Reviewed by Aaron Kunin

The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge
Rainer Maria Rilke
In Burton Pike’s refreshing new translation, the reader encounters an emergent Rilkean persona in full flowering. Reviewed by Tim Keane

Vilnius Poker
Ricardas Gavelis
Gavelis, considered Lithuania’s greatest novelist, captures the psychology of a protagonist tortured by his history and unable to explain his present-day life. Reviewed by Alex Starace

Tokyo Fiancée
Amélie Nothomb
Nothomb writes about a younger version of herself, staunchly defending her independence against the onslaught of romance. Reviewed by Ryan Michael Williams

The Lemoine Affair
Marcel Proust
This novella by Proust remarks not so much on the renowned 1908 diamond scandal as it does on the foibles of human nature. Reviewed by Alyssa Pelish

Voices from the North: New Writing from Norway
Edited by Vigdis Ofte & Steinar Sivertsen
This anthology interjects itself between the geographies of somewhere and nowhere as authors traverse their Stavangerian roots. Reviewed by Poul Houe


Hurry Down Sunshine: A Father's Story of Love and Madness
Michael Greenberg
Greenberg sieves the events surrounding his daughter’s “crack-up” to distill an eloquent disquisition on the fragility of daily living. Reviewed by Jacob Appel

The Soul and Barbed Wire: An Introduction to Solzhenitsyn
Edward E. Ericson, Jr. and Alexis Klimoff
The authors of this introduction offer readers unfamiliar with the work of Solzhenitsyn an intriguing look at his literary achievements. Reviewed by Jeff Bursey

Gilles Deleuze: Cinema and Philosophy
Paola Marrati
Marrati’s beautifully written and expertly translated book brings much needed clarity to Deleuze’s two monumental works on cinema. Reviewed by Joe Hughes

Motoring: The Highway Experience in America
John A. Jakle and Keith A. Sculle
The promise of the road and its reality are very different, as Jakle and Sculle demonstrate in this well-researched book. Reviewed Joni Tevis

Antoine’s Alphabet: Watteau and His World
Jed Perl
Perl employs an alphabetical structure to show the pleasure he takes in Antoine Watteau’s art of “silken surfaces and fleeting emotions.” Reviewed by W. C. Bamberger

Rimbaud: The Double Life of a Rebel
Edmund White
White provides a readable and absorbing critical biography of the masterful poet and inventor of the prose poem. Reviewed by Burke Bindbeutel

On Criticism (Thinking in Action)
Noel Carroll
Carroll’s work reclaims the importance of the critic as qualified determiner of artistic intent in this uneven but ultimately rewarding work. Reviewed by Nigel Beale

Punctuation: Art, Politics, and Play
Jennifer DeVere Brody
Brody’s book performs at every turn a subversive politics that celebrates the margins as places where the real deal goes down. Reviewed by Gregory Kirk Murray

Disorientations: Art on the Margins of the Contemporary
Travis Jeppesen
Disorientations collects Jeppesen’s art criticism, reviews of exhibitions, interviews with expatriate artists, and reports from the sets of film shootings. Reviewed by John Holten


Homage to the Last Avant-Garde
Kent Johnson
This collection represents a framing of Johnson’s total work, where his political poems, translations, and satirical sorties on the American poetic community can be seen within a coherent conceptual framework. Reviewed by Murat Nemet-Nejat

Dear Darkness
Kevin Young
Young’s poetry rages against racism, not allowing the jibes and taunts of school children to be forgiven or forgotten, nor anyone to hide beneath the veneer of ignorance. Reviewed by John Herbert Cunningham

The O Mission Repo (Vol. 1)
Travis Macdonald
Letters from Abu Ghraib
Joshua Casteel
These unconventional books defamiliarize the newspeak that has flattened our readings of 9/11 and the abuses at Abu Ghraib, bringing us into a new interpretive relationship with the recent history of the United States. Reviewed by Elizabeth Robinson

Dropping the Bow: Poems of Ancient India
Translated by Andrew Schelling
Schelling’s immersion in Indian life helped to craft these fine translations from another part of the world and a long-gone era in history. Reviewed by Robert Milo Baldwin

Signal from Draco: New and Selected Poems
Mebane Robertson
The reckless abandon that characterizes Robertson’s best poems reveal him to be proficient in what Robert Bly called “the leap from the conscious to the unconscious and back again.” Reviewed by Christopher Kondrich

Alpha Zulu
Gary Copeland Lilley
Lilley’s poems delve into the heart of the American city in this arresting collection. Reviewed by John Jacob

True Thoughts
Pam Brown
The role of daily life and the poet’s response to everyday movements are traced from poem to poem in this new collection. Reviewed by Gregory Bem


Pitch Blackness
Hank Willis Thomas
Thomas’s work reveals a complex visual threnody of grief and consternation after a family tragedy. Reviewed by George Slade

I don’t get it
Luc Tuymans
While Luc Tuymans has been one of the most celebrated European painters of the past twenty years, it is easy to understand why many might wonder why. Reviewed by Alice Dodge

Issues in Curating Contemporary Art and Performance
Edited by Judith Rugg and Michele Sedgwick
Gathered from a 2004 symposia on curating as a form of critical intervention into culture, this collection of essays by twelve British curators achieves a cumulative definition of the curatorial role. Reviewed by Patricia Healy McMeans

Rain Taxi Online Edition, Spring 2009 | © Rain Taxi, Inc. 2009