Volume 2 Number 2
Laura van den Berg
The Cincinnati Review is quite possibly one of the most gorgeous journals I’ve ever opened—with lovely cover art by Lynda Lowe, who has a color portfolio inside the magazine.
The Cincinnati Review is quite possibly one of the most gorgeous journals I’ve ever opened—with lovely cover art by Lynda Lowe, who has a color portfolio inside the magazine. Even though The Cincinnati Review has only been in print since 2003, it has all the trappings of a long-established publication: exemplary production quality, prominent contributors like Antonya Nelson and Billy Collins, and a selection of consistently engaging and evocative work. The fiction demonstrates a predilection for confident, direct narratives and quirky sensibilities. Antonya Nelson’s “Heart-Shaped Rock” meets her usual standards, and definite standouts include Tao Lin’s “Three-Day Cruise” and Kevin Wilson’s “Grand Stand-In,” with its sharp and funny opening: “The key to this job is to always remember that you aren’t replacing anyone’s grandmother. You aren’t trying to be a better grandmother than the first one. For all intents and purposes, you are the grandmother and always have been. And if you can persuade yourself of this, can provide this level of grandmotherliness with each family, every time, then you can make a good career.” This edition also includes a great selection of book reviews, including three pieces on Saul Bellow. Definitely pick up this issue of The Cincinnati Review—it solidifies the magazine’s reputation as one of the strongest new publications available. [The Cincinnati Review, University of Cincinnati, Department of English and Comparative Literature, McMicken Hall, Room 369, P.O. Box 210069, Cincinnati, OH, 45221. Single issue $9. www.cincinnatireview.com] — Laura van den Berg