Tag Archives: Spring 2021

Dance We Do:
A Poet Explores Black Dance

Ntozake Shange Beacon Press ($19.95) by Christopher Luna Dance We Do is a celebration of Black dance history, community, and mentorship that is as joyful and complex as its author. Ntozake Shange died before the book was finished, so it fell to her personal assistant Reneé L. Charlow to complete the task. While Shange will […]

vagrant (one) in thin air

Karen Garthe with art by Tod Thilleman Spuyten Duyvil ($35) by Lawrence R. Smith vagrant (one) in thin air, Karen Garthe’s fourth poetry collection, is also a collaboration, an integration of her fascinating poems with the color collages of Tod Thilleman. Every page of this avant-garde work is a surprise, taking readers to visual, intellectual, […]

Are Translators Ventriloquists?

On Reviewing Literary Translations by Eric Fishman Literary translators love to gripe that critics neglect their work. Peruse any online forum for translators and you’ll come across exchanges in which we vie with one another for the coveted title of most painful review, featuring entrants from reviews that neglect to mention that the work is […]

Rough Song

Blanca Varela Translated by Carlos Lara The Song Cave ($17.95) by John Bradley Peruvian poet Blanca Varela had an auspicious life, one in which she befriended Andre Breton, Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Henri Michaux, Alberto Giacometti, and Octavio Paz. Paz helped her find a publisher for her first book in 1959 and wrote the […]

Winter Counts

David Heska Wanbli Weiden Ecco ($27.99) by Julia Stein A stunning crime novel, Winter Counts offers a fascinating snapshot of life and Lakota culture on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. It’s a place where only the federal government has jurisdiction over felony crimes, but they ignore most crimes besides murder. The book’s hero, […]

The Productive Procrastination of Robert Stone: An Interview with Madison Smartt Bell

Interviewed by Allan Vorda Madison Smartt Bell was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, and graduated from Princeton University. He has published a total of twenty-two books, more than half of them novels. He is perhaps best known for his trilogy of historical fiction works focusing on Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution; All Souls […]

The Sculpture Of Ruth Asawa: Countours in the Air

Second Edition Edited by Timothy Anglin Burgard and Daniell Cornell University of California Press ($45) by Patrick James Dunagan Ruth Asawa’s life and work sets the consummate standard for being an engaged public artist in a city. Establishing her household in San Francisco was a key development in her “remarkable life journey” alongside her “groundbreaking […]


INTERVIEWS Homage to the Beats: An Interview with Gerald Nicosia Nicosia’s Beat Scrapbook provides powerful portraits of a wide range of Beats, many of them touchstones for both a social and literary revolution. Interviewed by Lawrence Welsh The Likely World: An Interview with Melanie Conroy-Goldman Conroy-Goldman discusses her new novel that delves into not only […]

Coolidge & Cherkovski in Conversation

Clark Coolidge & Neeli Cherkovski Edited by Kyle Harvey Lithic Press ($17) by Matt Hill To find a form that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. —Samuel Beckett This fascinating book offers a transcribed conversational collage between the poets Clark Coolidge and Neeli Cherkovski. Swapping their stories and memories, ranging […]