Tag Archives: Summer 2017

A Woman of Property

Robyn Schiff Penguin Books ($20) by Shayna Nenni Robyn Schiff’s third poetry collection, A Woman of Property, lyrically mixes together Greek historical figures with the qualms of motherhood. Implementing unusual forms allows Schiff to bring together “the ancient tragic scallop-shell- / shaped theatre at Ephesus” with her son’s “dreams of the wolf snail”. Her first-person […]

Basic Vocabulary

Amy Uyematsu Red Hen Press ($15.95) by Julia Stein A contributor to the pioneering 1971 anthology Roots: An Asian-American Reader, Amy Uyematsu published four books of poetry before her latest, Basic Vocabulary. In her first two books of poetry she breaks through silence to write powerful personal story poems about her parents and grandparents interned […]

Dear Cyborgs

Eugene Lim Farrar, Straus and Giroux ($14) by Robert Martin Despite the suggestively sci-fi title, Eugene Lim’s Dear Cyborgs is not a futuristic picaresque about sentimental robots. Rather, it’s about artists and poets and painters, and the glimmers of compassion found between these individuals and their pursuits; it’s also about superheroes, holograms, detectives, and sentient […]

Magic and Loss: The Internet as Art

Virginia Heffernan Simon & Schuster ($17) by Michael Workman The basic premise of this offbeat volume, which mixes a dishy personal voice with one of wonderment and relish, is that the Internet, which has made so many things—corded phones, ticket counters, socializing—disappear, has also left in its wake a deep sense of the loss of […]

Alexander’s Bridge

Willa Cather by Dennis Barone Perhaps the best short novels rely more on character than plot. Because of their brevity they will have a limited number of characters and settings, and time may be condensed or leaped. There is, too, a theatrical quality, with everyone appearing once more at the end for a final curtain […]

American Purgatory

Rebecca Gayle Howell Eyewear Publishing ($14.49) by Kent Weigle In American Purgatory, Rebecca Gayle Howell drops the reader into a dystopian world torn apart by industry and environmental cataclysm. In a work camp set in the American south, “Persons held to service / and labor” maintain huge fields of cotton and survive purely through biological […]

I Was Trying to Describe What It Feels Like: New and Selected Stories

Noy Holland Counterpoint Press ($28) by Kate Berson Describing what it feels like to read Noy Holland’s new and selected stories, I Was Trying to Describe What It Feels Like, is nearly impossible. The language tilts and loops. The tangible diffuses, dissolves, reconstitutes itself into something other. Any message a reader might seek evades. But […]

Men Without Women

Haruki Murakami Translated by Philip Gabriel and Ted Goossen Alfred A. Knopf ($25.95) by Allan Vorda Sometimes you come upon a writer who helps you discern some unknown world; for many readers, Haruki Murakami is such a writer. His latest creation, a collection of bizarre short stories titled Men Without Women, primarily focuses on male-female […]

Iep Jāltok: Poems from a Marshallese Daughter

Kathy Jetn̄il-Kijiner University of Arizona Press ($14.95) by John Bradley Two concrete poems entitled “Basket” open and close this engaging book. The arrangement of the words of each poem form the curved outline of a basket, which connects the reader to the book’s title. “Iep Jāltok,” we learn from the Marshallese English Dictionary, means “A […]