Issue 19 Reviews
Elisabeth Frost, All of Us
Reviewed by Stephanie Motz
all of us speaks to the over-analyzer in, quite appropriately, all of us. As we move through the book, Frost continually presents us with familiar life scenes that hinge upon how the people in them relate to each other and interpret the seemingly insignificant details of an interaction.
Howard Jacobson, The Finkler Question
Reviewed by David Latham
howard jacobson’s the Finkler Question is about many things: destiny, fortune telling, infidelity, marriage, circumcision, friendship, fatherhood, annoying children, widowhood, the BBC, old age, and of course, Judaism.
Noelle Kocot, The Bigger World
Reviewed by Nicole Moore
noelle kocot’s fifth book of poetry, The Bigger World, is a series of ironies. The first poem is titled "God Bless the Child," yet the first line is, "Horatia hated children." Kocot’s ironies, however, seem to be placed with specific intent.
Ada Limón, Sharks in the Rivers
Reviewed by Kelsey Shipman
though entitled sharks in the Rivers, Ada Limón’s most recent book is as full of sky as it is of water, of birds as it is of fish. Readers are invited into the lonely world of New York City and the longing it creates for a deeper connection with nature.
Neve Maslakovic, Regarding Ducks and Universes
Reviewed by Danielle Ducrest
one day in 1986, a scientific experiment causes the bifurcation of the universe. At the moment of the split, Universes A and B are identical; but, after, they are no longer the same. Anyone born before the bifurcation has an alter identity in the other universe.
Anthony McCann, I Heart Your Fate
Reviewed by Luisa Muradyan
reading anthony mccann is like bringing a beautiful baby home. You are surprised when you turn around with a warm bottle and find your hairy Uncle Leonard in the highchair, smoking his cigarette above a bowl of cereal.
Bonnie Nadzam, Lamb
Reviewed by Ross Feeler
good prose creates physical reactions: we laugh; we cry; we, as Emily Dickinson put it, feel the tops of our heads lopped off. Bad blurbs, for me at least, likewise create physical reactions, though of a different kind: when I read prose described as evocative, breathtaking, or—worst of all—important, bullshit sirens howl in my mind.
Matthew Rohrer, Destroyer and Preserver
Reviewed by Amanda Perez
that daily ritual and random interruption make up life, measures by which we make meaning and the ultimate evidence of the temporariness of our existence, is a great irony, which Matthew Rohrer’s latest collection of poems explores.
Zach Savich, The Firestorm
Reviewed by Jessica Binkley
reading zach savich’s new book, The Firestorm, is much like looking for a fire escape when caught in an unfamiliar burning building. The poems burn slowly as the language bulges and envelops like a cloud of overwhelming smoke, and just when it looks like an escape is near, the reader is bombarded with a back draft of rapidly changing thoughts.
Martha Silano, The Little Office of the Immaculate Conception
Reviewed by Andi Boyd
martha silano’s the Little Office of the Immaculate Conception, the 2010 Saturnalia Books Poetry Prize winner, works to coalesce the banality of everyday life with the absurdity of imagination.
Julie Marie Wade, Without
Reviewed by John Fry
published the same year as her Lambda award-winning Wishbone: A Memoir In Fractures, Julie Marie Wade’s chapbook Without is a lyrical cartography that wrestles with what it means for a 21st-century American woman to be "separated from the ones who / were once like you, who you were once like."