Month: January 2018

Review: The Undressing by Li-Young Lee

In a 2007 interview with Tina Chang, for the Academy of American Poets, Li-Young Lee, speaks to the the poem’s genesis as inseparable from the rhythms of human nature, and from world itself: “There’s no way to account for any thing or any event. If you rigorously dissect it, you realize that everything is a shape of the totality of… Read more →

Review: The World Goes On by László Krasznahorkai

A deep, unsettling current runs through the work of Hungarian writer László Krazsnahorkai. His prose simmers and threatens, never reaching for brutality yet somehow arriving easily on the doorstep of the apocalyptic. For him. the story is in the sentence, and his sentences stretch on and on, meandering across pages and moods, shifting through phases, at times whimsical, at others… Read more →

Review: Melville, A Novel by Jean Giono

The “Melville” of Giono’s mad little book is exactly who you think it is: Herman himself, on his way to London to drop off Whitejacket with his publishers. Giono’s Melville is troubled, though. He’s fed up with his books, “he had already written them all. He felt rid of them.” Though, of course, savvy readers are aware that he hasn’t… Read more →

Review: The Vanishing Princess by Jenny Diski

A princess lives in a tower. We can’t call her imprisoned as she has never attempted to leave. In fact, she has never even considered it. She spends her days reading books, with the occasional glance through the window at a world which does not interest her. Then the soldiers arrive. One brings delicacies, wrapped in white cloth. The princess… Read more →

Review: Saudade by Traci Brimhall

Traci Brimhall’s third full-length collection of poetry Saudade begins with an impossible translation, the title being the Brazilian Portuguese word saudade which doesn’t equate perfectly to a single word in English. Saudade is like a profound longing, and so, before her first poem begins, Brimhall already gives something away about the shape of the book, or the shape it will… Read more →

Review: Houses of Ravicka by Renee Gladman

Jakobi is the Comptroller of the city of Ravicka whose job, as Renee Gladman lucidly explains in her afterword to the novella, is to “take geoscogs of the city’s buildings and houses…measurements that keep track of a building’s subtle changes and movements over time.” This peculiar job, like the city in which Jakobi carries out his duties, along with its… Read more →