Tag: review

Review: Who is Mary Sue by Sophie Collins

In Sophie Collins’ Who is Mary Sue? (Faber 2018), the interrogative provides backdrop to the deep problems of privilege, identity, gender, and Collins shapes her collection to surprise as much as shock us awake. And she not only makes the world we already know new through poetic image, but returns us to the ignored, truncated, and occluded voices and persons… Read more →

Review: The Final Voicemails by Max Ritvo

Max Ritvo’s second and final collection of poems, The Final Voicemails, has been published posthumously by Milkweed, two years after his death from Ewing’s sarcoma on August 23, 2016. Ritvo asked Louise Glück to select the best poems of what remained, both from earlier work and poems written toward the end of his life, a time of which Glück notes… Read more →

Review: Wilder by Claire Wahmanholm

Wilder by Claire Wahmanholm is a rare prophetic glimpse into a future haunted by the now. An alchemist of language, Wahmanholm’s first full-length book since her award-winning chapbook, Night Vision, is a revelry far beyond what I believed imagination could conjure. She gives us a complete stranger of a world, a planet ruled by its own profound logic of consistency… Read more →

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Review: Max Ritvo, Four Reincarnations

“The bed is on fire, and are you laughing?” With the first line of Max Ritvo’s stunning collection, we are welcomed into a world where sorrow and joy, desire and loss, cannot be untangled. The opening poem, “Living It Up,” is a perfect introduction to the poet’s singular and extraordinary mind: The springs want to embrace each other but they’re… Read more →

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Review: Perfect Little World, by Kevin Wilson

It starts simple: Izzy has just graduated high school and is pregnant with her art teacher’s baby. She lives with her alcoholic father and makes $13,000 a year smoking barbecue at The Whole Hog. The art teacher’s wealthy mother, desperate to maintain her family’s reputation, offers to help make the situation disappear. In another writer’s hands, this novel would continue… Read more →

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Review: Cold Pastoral, by Rebecca Dunham

Rebecca Dunham’s newest poetry collection, Cold Pastoral, begins with a poem entitled “Mnemosyne to the Poet.” As opening to a collection that documents disaster—both man-made and ecological—Mnemosyne laments, “For you, memory is but / an oil lamp to snuff,” and later, “I am not permitted / / to turn…Am not permitted / to learn how not to look.” So stands… Read more →

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Review: Kayla Rae Whitaker, The Animators

To borrow a phrase from its main character, this book is “a story of consumption.” Hunger—for sex, love, high art, truth, authentic experience—drives the narrative, wavering between hollow pain, satisfaction, and over-indulgence. The Animators is at first wild, wicked fun. As it progresses, the work deepens to the profound. You’ll fall for the two main characters—animation partners, friends so close… Read more →