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Book Reviews by Title - T (87)

  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Jon Pineda
  • Date Published March 2008
  • ISBN-13 978-1930974753
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 57pp
  • Price $14.00
  • Review by Laura Eve Engel
The cover of Jon Pineda’s second collection, The Translator’s Diary, which depicts a graceful and nebulous spiral, is eerily reflective of the poems it obscures. Pineda’s poems turn in on themselves, each a pointed and intimate introspection sheathed in the gauze of the lyric, accruing momentum in a sort of ripple effect as the book progresses.
  • Subtitle A Memoir
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Nonfiction
  • by Michael White
  • Date Published March 2015
  • ISBN-13 978-0892554379
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 192pp
  • Price $17.95
  • Review by Scott Russell Morris
A little bit travelogue, a little bit art history, and a little bit heartbreaking memoir, Michael White’s Travels in Vermeer explores the author’s fascination with the paintings of Johannes Vermeer, a fascination that takes him around Europe and America. Traveling to Amsterdam, The Hague, Delft, Washington D.C., New York, and London in the course of a year—while at the same time dealing with a painful divorce and custody battle, remembering the difficulties of his childhood and the alcoholism of his early adulthood, trying to get back into the dating scene, and remembering the brief, passionate romance with his first wife, who died of cancer—White gives long meditations on Vermeer’s paintings in lyric detail, becoming an intense eye through which we the readers also get to see them.
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Pam Durban
  • Date Published October 2012
  • ISBN-13 978-0807149720
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 200pp
  • Price $23.00
  • Review by Trena Machado
The Tree of Forgetfulness, by Pam Durban, is the winner of the Lillian Smith Book Award. The novel is based on the true event of the lynching of three blacks in Aiken, South Carolina—a town in which forty-one lynchings had been investigated in the eight years prior to the one in 1926. The characters, fictional, are few: Howard and Libba Aimar and their son, daughter and unborn grandchild; Minnie and Zeke Settles, the Aimars’ black help; Aubrey Timmerman, the sheriff, who does the law his way; and Curtis N. R. Barrett, the New York reporter sent to find who really committed the murders, the three bodies so shot up and burned, they were a horror to view. The Confederate flag, bootleg whisky, the Klan, as well as good Southern manners and antebellum descendants whose heritage of “how it used to be” are all here, but the book is a series of levels moving downward from community to the individual, propelled by the interior dialogue of the characters, until we come to the real story.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Heather Christle
  • Date Published July 2011
  • ISBN-13 978-0980193879
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 72pp
  • Price $12.00
  • Review by J. A. Tyler
The Trees The Trees, the second poetry collection from Heather Christle, is a loosely-knit collection of poems that sometimes has to do with trees, that often has to do with the dichotomy of relationships, and that always has an overwhelmingly and wonderfully infectious use of rhythm:
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Craig Morgan Teicher
  • Date Published April 2017
  • ISBN-13 978-1-942683-31-5
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 80pp
  • Price $16.00
  • Review by Kimberly Ann Priest

“I was made // to be good like this, a father / before I was done being my father’s / son.” -from “Tracheotomy”

While most of the nation is wrangling over politics, some poets, like Craig Morgan Teicher, are reminding us of our human fragility in this pandemonium of voices. Poets like Teicher are forced by circumstance to cultivate a stillness of spirit for fear of inhaling or exhaling too carelessly and thereby breaking the already frayed cord of life struggling to hold itself together—that frayed cord being the speaker’s son so consciously observed in this 88-page manuscript of poems, The Trembling Answers.

 

  • Image Image
  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Brandon Som
  • Date Published March 2014
  • ISBN-13 978-1-937658-18-2
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 104pp
  • Price $15.95
  • Review by Ryo Yamaguchi
The Tribute Horse, Brandon Som’s debut full collection, is a surprising title once you wade into the first few pages of this beautiful mediation on migration, cultural memory, and the great mitigating force of both, language. The title image is almost like a piece of statuary, a trophy or memorial object, and to be sure, this collection does feel like a tribute, but it spends far more time at sea and among the heights of birdsong and other utterances than would seem to warrant that powerfully terrestrial and corporeal image of the horse.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Julia Cohen
  • Date Published July 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9826364-2-8
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 63pp
  • Price $14.00
  • Review by Sima Rabinowitz
The opening lines of Triggermoon Triggermoon establish immediately Cohen’s primary preoccupations. This is a poetry that concerns itself above all else with the relationship between self (as body, as moral agent in the world, as emotional intelligence, as individual in relationship to others) and the objects and physical constructs of daily life. The first poem, “There Was a Bridge of Tattered Rugs,” begins:
  • Subtitle From the first 20 years of Creative Nonfiction Magazine
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Nonfiction Edited
  • by Lee Gutkind and Hattie Fletcher
  • Date Published August 2014
  • ISBN-13 978-1-9371631-6-7
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 320pp
  • Price $15.95
  • Review by Jason Hess
The twenty-two selections in this nonfiction collection are culled from twenty years of Creative Nonfiction Magazine. I was worried it would inevitably suffer from aesthetic myopia. But the selections are eclectic enough to avoid this. I learned about the history of sign language, the particulars of Finnish baseball, and about the difficulties and rewards of teaching a university course on the philosophy of death. This whirlwind collection features an exceptionally talented stable of writers, all of whom are present as characters in their essays.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Ann Scowcroft
  • Date Published March 2011
  • ISBN-13 978-1-926829-67-8
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 104pp
  • Price $19.00
  • Review by Alyse Bensel
Ann Scowcroft’s debut collection overlays simple language with the depth and complexity of family relationships. Centered in interactions with family and close friends, Scowcroft captures a sense of regret in presenting broken and austere images of the home. The Truth of Houses demonstrates how a poet can explore how relationships continuously change throughout the course of a life, providing rich and multifaceted people that populate its pages.
  • Image Image
  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Mark Brazaitis
  • Date Published January 2015
  • ISBN-13 978-1-938769-03-0
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 180pp
  • Price $17.95
  • Review by Rhonda Browning White
“Katherine’s son was about to wrestle a blind boy. . . .” So begins “The Blind Wrestler,” the first short story in Mark Brazaitis’s collection Truth Poker.­ Surprising, intriguing, declarative sentences like this sink teeth into you and don’t let go, until you’ve reached each story’s satisfying ending. In “The Blind Wrestler,” Katherine has an affair with her son’s high-school-wrestling opponent. She regularly meets the handsome young man in a vacant house, “a den of mild iniquity,” where she confronts not only the loneliness in her marriage to a man eighteen years her senior, but also the way she blindly trudges through motherhood toward old age, without enjoying the journey or considering her destination.
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