Tag Archives: Fall 2019

At the Last Minute

Estha Weiner Salmon Poetry ($20) by Walter Holland Precision, wit, timing, and agility are important to an actor. The ability to speak “trippingly on the tongue,” making yourself understood in the upper galleries or to groundlings below, to play both tragedy and comedy at the flip of a coin—these are the merits of the Shakespearean […]

A Shaming, Damning,
Beautiful Moment:
An Interview with Stephen Markley

by Benjamin Davis Stephen Markley was writing about opioid addiction and rust-belt voters before the issues hounded the headlines. Those stories came together in his debut novel, Ohio (Simon & Schuster, $16.99), a book that began as a murder mystery and became a large-scale social commentary. Called “a kind of fiction/op-ed hybrid” by The New […]

Every Mask I Tried On

Alina Stefanescu Brighthorse Books ($16.95) by Ralph Pennel In Good and Evil, Nietzsche argues that, “All great things must first wear terrifying and monstrous masks, in order to inscribe themselves on the hearts of humanity.” In her debut fiction collection, Every Mask I Tried On, author Alina Stefanescu does just that by means of critical […]

Two Roads Diverged:
Jack Kerouac and Robert Creeley

“In the other room wild women are dancing as Creeley of Acton Massachusetts and I of Lowell beat.” - Jack Kerouac, letter to John Clellon Holmes May 27, 1956 by Jonah Raskin They both cast long literary shadows across American letters in the second half of the twentieth-century. Jack Kerouac was mostly a novelist though […]

A Body of Work: The Tour

by Don Cummings Good thing I came down with the flu. My shepherd into the publishing world, Lisa, and her husband, Vito, came to Los Angeles for a visit. We were on our way to Cambria, a small town four hours’ drive north, and we stopped in Buellton at Industrial Eats for lunch. As we […]

Practice Dying

Rachel Stolzman Gullo Bink Books ($13.95) by Andrew Draper In the late 1980s, a young boy from the Upper West Side walks into the 92nd Street Y and meets the Dalai Lama, setting in motion a lifelong spiritual journey. Twenty years later, a young woman browsing the stacks of the Strand has a “meet cute” […]

Time For Bed

Wendy Rawlings Louisiana State University Press ($24.95) by Hugh Sheehy For many readers, the title of Wendy Rawlings’s new story collection will conjure contradictory sensations. Time for Bed calls to mind the dark and impenetrable wall at the end of a child’s day as well as the start of the brief reprieve parents have once […]


Mark Mayer Bloomsbury Publishing ($26) by Nick Hilbourn The short stories in Mark Mayer’s Aerialists are epicenters of rituals and patterns. Characters ruggedly assemble themselves in the space of his stories, appropriating whatever matter is around to fill themselves out. In “The Wilderness Act,” for example, a lonely bachelor seeks to draw a lover back […]

A Conversation between
Michelle Lewis and Jeffrey Morgan

After twenty-five years of publishing its print journal, Conduit Books & Ephemera launched a book publishing division in 2018. It did so with two book prizes for poetry: the Marystina Santiestevan First Book Prize, judged by Bob Hicok, and the Minds On Fire Open Book Prize, judged by Conduit’s editorial board. In the following piece, […]