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Book Reviews by Title - T (87)

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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Adam McOmber
  • Date Published June 2011
  • ISBN-13 978-1-934414-51-4
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 180pp
  • Price $14.00
  • Review by Patricia Contino
Judging by the expression of the startled damsel on the cover of This New & Poisonous Air, some things are best left alone. But what purpose does that really serve? There would be no experience. No meaning. It is the unknown’s transformation into a difficult reality that Adam McOmber explores in his strong collection of stories.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Gillian Wegener
  • Date Published April 2017
  • ISBN-13 978-1-939639-13-4
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 96pp
  • Price $16.00
  • Review by Daniel Klawitter

In the poem “16 Reasons You Shouldn’t Like Me (And I Don’t Like Me Either),” Gillian Wegener writes: “I mine the cupboards of memory / And all I come up with is / A treasury of embarrassments.” But there is nothing embarrassing about this new full-length collection of poems, This Sweet Haphazard.

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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Elena Ferrante
  • Date Published September 2014
  • ISBN-13 978-1-60945-233-9
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 418pp
  • Price $18.00
  • Review by Olive Mullet
The reader will either become addicted to or lack the commitment needed for Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels starting with My Brilliant Friend (331 pages), followed by The Story of a New Name (471 pages) and this latest third volume Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay. The final fourth volume will come out September 2015. The length of the novels and the character-driven, rather than plot-driven, story might discourage some readers.
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Wendy Jones
  • Date Published March 2014
  • ISBN-13 978-1-60945-185-1
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 272pp
  • Price $17.00
  • Review by Olive Mullet
The title of this debut novel by Wendy Jones, The Thoughts and Happenings of Wilfred Price Purveyor of Superior Funerals, suggests a fun, light, old-fashioned read, which it partly is. But it also deals with serious, timeless subjects, though the resolution reflects the time wherein the novel takes place: 1924, in the small Welsh town of Narberth.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Bao Phi
  • Date Published July 2017
  • ISBN-13 978-1-56689-470-8
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 112pp
  • Price $16.95
  • Review by DM O'Connor

The other day a seemingly nice older man whom I don’t know exclaimed, “I really don’t care for this hot weather—are you from Japan?” Hell yeah, I should have said. In fact, you know that movie Godzilla? That’s based on my life. It makes me want to vomit radioactively and commit zombie homicide, except in my version there is more than one Asian who survives. Our real conversation was not nearly as fun, but at least it didn’t end in violence. Our daughter overheard this and admonished me: “Don’t talk to strangers, Daddy.” – from “Greek Triptych”

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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Juliet Patterson
  • Date Published November 2016
  • ISBN-13 978-1-937658-55-7
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 80pp
  • Price $15.95
  • Review by Ryo Yamaguchi

“Toward a flower- / ing I came // lowly lupine raised / wrist,” Juliet Patterson begins in “Toward,” the opening poem of her latest collection, Threnody, out last fall from Nightboat Books. And with these few lines, she deftly establishes the themes and sensibilities of her project: nature raised up into inspection, and with it, inspection itself (the wrist). Quiet, patient, yet often with a swarming force, these poems worry the fraught intersection between humanity and nature, where, as we quickly see, threat abides. If nature is a flowering, it is a flowering against the edges of nothingness.

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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Milen Ruskov
  • Translated From Bulgarian
  • by Angela Rodel
  • Date Published November 2011
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 294pp
  • Price $15.95
  • Review by Wendy Breuer
Novels that focus on contemporary foibles are often flattened in time by the ephemeral. In Thrown into Nature, Bulgarian writer Milen Ruskov sidesteps the obsolescence problem by giving us a picaresque novel set in sixteenth century Spain. Guimarães da Silva, acolyte and student, narrates his adventures with his mentor, Dr. Monardes, a true figure out of history, the "discoverer" and promoter of tobacco as the cure for whatever ails you.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Dorothea Lasky
  • Date Published October 2012
  • ISBN-13 9781933517636
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 128pp
  • Price $16.00
  • Review by Pia Aliperti
The “other” world is a refrain throughout Dorothea Lasky’s startling new collection Thunderbird, which seeks the origins of creativity in the dark corners of anger, frustration, and even boredom. “I don’t live in this world,” Lasky writes (in “Death and Sylvia Plath”). “I already live in the other one.” These second worlds are easy to “breeze” into (“When you breeze upon the other world / O you are already there / O you are already there”); alternately, they seem impossibly insular (“Sweet animal, they locked us in this life / But I think we still have time before we have to get out of it”). In a book of flights—“Thunderbird” references a Native American spirit, but Lasky also conjures birds, planes, wind, and the mind’s movements—travel means to relinquish control. To disembody:
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Katharine Haake
  • Date Published March 2012
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9845782-1-4
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 294pp
  • Price $15.00
  • Review by H. V. Cramond
With increasing frequency, well-meaning friends have been sending me articles that encourage me to stop worrying about the next generation and just have fun. It’s not that they think everything will turn out OK, but rather, that we’re so far gone, there’s nothing to be done. It seems that groups of climate scientists are predicting our demise with a specificity and immediacy that would make an old-timey cult leader blush. The Water Wars are coming: look busy.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Ayane Kawata
  • Translated From Japanese
  • by Sawako Nakayasu
  • Date Published May 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-1-933959-08-5
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 144pp
  • Price $18.00
  • Review by C.J. Opperthauser
Sawako Nakayasu's translation of Ayane Kawata's Time of Sky & Castles in the Air proves that translating Japanese to English can result in a beautiful rebirth. The first half of the book, Time of Sky, is full of number-titled poems usually no longer than three or four lines in length, but these poems pack so much imagery and beautiful sounds that the reader often has no choice but to reread immediately. I found myself pausing to soak in all of the wonderful, unique images and ideas. Even simple things resound with beauty, like the description of a pigeon in 12:
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