is news, information, and guides to literary magazines, independent publishers, creative writing programs, alternative periodicals, indie bookstores, writing contests, and more.

NewPages Book Reviews

Posted November 2, 2009

  • Image Image
  • Book Type Ed. Lorraine M. Lopez
  • Date Published October 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-0472050789
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 216pp
  • Price $22.95
  • Review by Krystal Languell
Few aspects of personal experience are taboo any longer, but Lorraine López has collected a set of essays in this anthology that address an emerging topic of national conversation: what does it mean to grow up poor? In our current cultural moment, when the availability of health care for all Americans is being negotiated, the concerns of this collection are particularly sage.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Novel
  • by Muriel Barbery
  • Translated From French
  • by Alison Anderson
  • Date Published September 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-1933372952
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 160pp
  • Price $15.00
  • Review by Laura Di Giovine
Gourmet Rhapsody, Muriel Barbery’s slim but savory novel, is like poetry served on a platter – filled with dazzling and delicious language. The story begins with the world’s most famous (and most despised) food critic realizing that he will die in 48 hours. Monsieur Pierre Arthens lives in Paris, in the building immortalized in Barbery’s first novel, The Elegance of the Hedgehog.
  • Book Type Poetry/Prose
  • by Jacques Réda
  • Translated From French
  • by Aaron Prevots
  • Date Published June 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-0-924047-70-1
  • Format Hardcover
  • Pages 153pp
  • Price $12.00
  • Review by Roy Wang
With his Proust-like ramblings, Europes is Jacques Réda's entertaining reflection upon the various selves that surface in different locales across the continent. In fact, often the named country provides only the most tangential entry point for the inner world into which he dives. Take for example a passage from “Switzerland. IV. The Eagle”:
  • Subtitle Translating Latin American Fiction
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Nonfiction
  • by Suzanne Jill Levine
  • Date Published October 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-1564785633
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 208pp
  • Price $13.95
  • Review by John Madera
Synopsizing her own book The Subversive Scribe, Suzanne Jill Levine in “Cositas Are Not Things,” the book’s penultimate chapter, writes:
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Novel
  • by Michael Burke
  • Date Published September 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-1-929355-50-1
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 180pp
  • Price $15
  • Review by Elizabeth Townsend
Johnny ‘Blue’ Heron is a private eye more interested in sex and alcohol than the steady job he could have with the local police. Blue is hired by George Fuller to trai his son to find out if the younger Fuller is having an affair. This deceptively simple job lands Blue in the middle of affairs, intrigue, incest, corruption, and some rather shady business deals. Blue comes off as cynical sort of fellow, believing that no one is quite what they appear to be (“Always thought I was a fake, but aren’t we all. We invent ourselves and defy the world to discover the ruse.”), but he is surprisingly unaware of some people’s darker sides.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Art
  • by Zak Sally
  • Date Published July 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-1-56689-225-4
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 205pp
  • Price $14.95
  • Review by Cynthia Reeser
If you are prowling for something truly chilling to read, Edgar and International Horror Guild Award-nominated author Brian Evenson's collection of unsettling short fiction, Fugue State, may be just the thing to curdle your blood. Accompanied by illustrations from the multi-talented graphic novelist Zak Sally, Fugue State also includes an evocative graphic short that brings "Dread" to life. Each of the book's nineteen stories include subjects who tenuously skirt the borderlines of sanity and the edges of awareness, of substantive reality. Significantly, Evenson successfully marries the usually disparate genres of horror and literary fiction.

We welcome any/all Feedback.