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  • Issue Number Issue 10
  • Published Date Winter 2013
  • Publication Cycle Quarterly
Eleven writers and four featured artists share space in this 98 page-long issue. The glossy finish on every page, a very artistic layout, and deep thought writings make this issue of Stone Voices a perfect coffee table magazine. It carries a byline of “art-spirituality-mindfulness-creativity,” calling out for readers looking inside to invest some time rather than a distracted flip through. That is not to say the material is not entertaining.
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  • Issue Number Numbers 180 & 181
  • Published Date Fall 2013/Winter 2014
  • Publication Cycle Quarterly
Reading Salmagundi is like sitting in a graduate school seminar in the humanities or a panel at the 92nd Street Y. Confidence, and sophistication, big names, and the requisite originality ooze through the page. Fortunately, it never quite tips into snobbishness, and following the writers’ trains of thought was for me a demanding but enjoyable exercise. Depending on your background, though and I use the word “background” broadly to mean cultural, ethnic, class, academic, professional, or simply experience or preference as a reader—it may be hard to miss the milieu in which Salmagundi situates itself: among the cerebral, among those who do not have to or who do not worry about money, those who have already carved out a place for themselves in the world, the arrived.
  • Issue Number Issue 5
  • Published Date May & June 2013
  • Publication Cycle Bimonthly online
The writing in Split Lip pulls the reader in, immediately. All the pieces seem to have that attention-grabbing first line(s). Take these for example: “Jude discharges liquid through her mouth all morning. She suffers from the opposite of motion sickness—she can’t handle the stillness” (Genevieve Hudson’s “Even Wild Horses”). “It happens in a Hong Kong hooker hotel, / off Nathan Road.  A round bed under mirrors, / girlie pinups gazing from candy-pink walls” (Lauren Tivey’s “The Breakdown Atlas). And: “You wake up on the toilet staring at your dick” (Sean Davis’s “Sudsy Penguins”). But, of course, first lines are the only part of the story. After each of these lines come excellent fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.
  • Issue Number Volume 14 Number 2
  • Published Date Summer 2009
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
You’ll always find a few big stars in Salamander (Chase Twichell, Maura Stanton, Michael Collins). What’s more important, though, is that you’ll always find some stellar work. And this issue is no exception. I am thrilled to see two poems from Catherine Sasanov’s new collection, Had Slaves. I heard her read from this book last year prior to its publication and was quite taken with these spare (with the exception of their titles!), beautifully composed, and astoundingly moving poems about a family history of slave ownership.
With edgy poetry and quirky short shorts, Stray Dog is fun—really, really fun. This issue starts off with a prose poem—usually not the first selection in a journal—about a man writing prose poems. Michael Cocchiarale’s short short, “Other Side of the Bed,” is wildly entertaining, describing a man looking over his wife’s side of the bed for the first time in thirty years and discovering another man—and his apartment.
  • Issue Number Number 144-145
  • Published Date Fall 2004-Winter 2005
Big names and big reputations here, as always: Nadine Gordimer, Joyce Carol Oates, Richard Howard, Chase Twichell, Honor Moore, C.K. Williams. Take this issue along if you're planning a long plane ride or a day of waiting somewhere, you won't run out of reading material and you'll be able to escape whatever drudgery surrounds you. The work here is dense, solid, and serious. Gordimer's story, "Alleserlorenn," is not to be missed.
  • Issue Number Volume 41 Number 1
  • Published Date Spring 2011
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
Lyrical essays and poetry rely upon the power of metaphor and associative thinking to create a deeper, more personal interpretation for the reader. The writers in this issue of the Seneca Review walk a fine line, hoping to tickle the reader’s imagination while providing enough detail to ground the piece in something resembling the real world. Most of the time, the authors are quite successful, providing delicious food for thought.
  • Issue Number Volume 3 Numbers 1 & 2
  • Published Date 2010
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
With its announced theme “Issues of Death” and its ghoulish cover of skulls, it’s impossible to imagine that inside this issue of Seattle Review, one of the most satisfying features is a graphic story, “Number One,” written by Janice Shapiro and drawn by Jessica Wolk-Stanley, a wonderfully illustrated tale of “the social pyramid of North Hollywood circa 1965.” And, yes, it’s about death.
Photographer Carolee J. Friday’s “El Santuario de Chimayo,” at the center of the issue, a beautiful rustic stone church set against shadows that seem almost surreal they are so “hyper-real,” captures beautifully a true New Mexican sensibility. I find the issue’s artwork (photographs, paintings, a graphic story, illustrations), much of which has a decidedly Southwestern feel, especially appealing. Inspired by the region, too, are a short story from Bibi Deitz (“3rd Person, March”), a poem by Kathryne Lim (“Over the Taos Gorge”), and a poem by Michael G. Smith, who is also interviewed in this issue, “Late Autumn Poem, Winter Coming.”
  • Issue Number Volume 97 Number 2
  • Published Date Spring/Summer 2010
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
Such established and accomplished writers as Jim Daniels and Colleen S. Harris are joined by many student writers, a funky section of writing about the music scene, and 20 pages of impressive artwork.
  • Issue Number Number 25
  • Published Date 2010
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
Is Bob Hicok stalking me? His name appears in the TOC of nearly every journal I’ve reviewed for so long now that I no longer remember what is was like to read a magazine without encountering a Hicok poem. Not that I’m complaining. Who would dare complain about an opening like this one to “Perhaps an entry somewhere in a book”:
  • Issue Number Volume 1 Number 1
  • Published Date Spring 2008
Superstition Review is not just another journal of interviews, art, fiction, nonfiction and poetry. This creation is a unique collaboration between an all-star team of professional writers/professors and the Arizona State University student community of writers. In this first issue, although there is gluttony of writing selections for you choose from (mostly from professors), you are not left bored, fatigued or searching for your lucky rabbits foot to take you into uncharted and more creative territories in whatever genre you choose to read from first.
  • Issue Number Number 10
  • Published Date 2007
  • Publication Cycle Annual
“Imagination has a heavy appetite / for destruction. Whose red weather / gathers names, makes do / with the least momentous stuff.” Ashley McWater’s poem, “Defending,” sums up Spinning Jenny’s editorial vision: imagination as destruction in the sense of destroying expectations, shattering tired patterns, un-doing traditional formulas, un-making the routine and predictable, and creating something new.
  • Issue Number Volume 13 Number 2
  • Published Date 2008
  • Publication Cycle Biannual
At one point in Cormac McCarthy’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Road, the main character laments how he’s forgetting things’ names: “Colors. The names of birds. Things to eat. Finally the names of things one believed to be true.” The work in this issue of Salamander reacts against this amnesia, knowing that loss in specifics results in loss of meaning. As Jennifer Barber, the editor, says, “[These pieces] restore the essential questions about what we live through, what we imagine, and what we tell, answering Rilke’s call to ‘Speak and bear witness.’” Through Salamander’s focus on life’s details, it does just that.
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