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Book Reviews by Title - W (81)

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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Marjorie Maddox
  • Date Published March 2016
  • ISBN-13 978-1-942515-68-5
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 180pp
  • Price $15.00
  • Review by Kelly Sauvage Angel

Regardless of how “evolved” our literary tastes may be, it’s probably safe to say that, amid the busy-ness of our lives, we may occasionally neglect to make time (or create the headspace) for subtleties, the nuances that allow us to reach a more tender place within ourselves, a place capable of recognizing that very tenderness within others. This is precisely the reason that What She Was Saying by Marjorie Maddox is a collection meant to be read during times of stillness, as a reprieve from the dissonance and incessant clatter of the world around us, so as to prevent the story beneath the story from being lost amid the din.

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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Margaret Christakos
  • Date Published September 2008
  • ISBN-13 978-1-55245-204-2
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 120pp
  • Price $16.95
  • Review by Vince Corvaia
Reading Margaret Christakos’s poetry on the page is like reading sheet music. You don’t get the full effect until you hear it. And when you do hear it, when you read it aloud to yourself, you realize that the music is wildly experimental and takes some participation. Christakos, in What Stirs, challenges you to meet her halfway. There’s nothing passive about these poems.
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  • Book Type Edited
  • by Vicky Lettmann, Carol Roan
  • Date Published January 2011
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9823545-2-0
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 388pp
  • Price $17.95
  • Review by Sima Rabinowitz
“By the time you’re fifty if you’re in your right mind / you want a divorce from yourself.” Poet Ed Meek pretty well sums up my feelings about it. And similar insights, emotional accuracy, and appealing, understated voices like Meek’s pretty well sums up most of this anthology’s opening lines. Here is Susan Pepper Robbins (“Middle Solutions,” fiction): “‘I told him, I’m not dead yet. You can have them all then, but not now. Not before then.’ Mary turns her head to me, who is not dead yet either, although almost. This year I have lost twenty pounds and gained back thirty, so I’m ten ahead.” And here is Ann Olson (“Coteau, 1969,” nonfiction): “I’m cold. It’s dark. I don’t know where the hell we’re going.” And here is Christina Lovin (“Credo at Fifty-Five”):
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  • Book Type Novel
  • by Nora Eisenberg
  • Date Published November 2008
  • ISBN-13 978-1931896474
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 288pp
  • Price $15.00
  • Review by Jessica Powers
Nora Eisenberg tackles a touchy topic in When You Come Home – specifically, she writes about the mysterious Gulf War illness that afflicted a quarter of returning soldiers from the Gulf War, but, more generally, she explores the damage that soldiers sustain physically and emotionally during wartime.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Melissa Broder
  • Date Published February 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9841025-4-9
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 88pp
  • Price $13.95
  • Review by Michael Flatt
Melissa Broder’s When You Say One Thing But Mean Your Mother is a collection of narrative portraits, most of them less than flattering. The speaker in this collection is nothing if not critical. Of the woman with suburban ideals, who “should be left to rot in her / dream car with a frozen Jenny Craig / glazed salmon.” Of an aging camp counselor, a “hippie phenomenon / but she is more crow’s feet than feathers.” Of middle-aged men wearing unhip t-shirts, “age 35, attempt / one last punch at design-y-ness.”
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Andrew Zornoza
  • Date Published June 2009
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9779019-1-3
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 108pp
  • Price $14.00
  • Review by Cynthia Reeser
Andrew Zornoza’s expansive, fragmentary Where I Stay is a piecemeal construction of text and image. An epigraph, penned in 1938 by Walker Evans, simultaneously urges the reader and the eye behind the camera to focus on “[t]hese anonymous people who come and go in the cities and who move on the land,” on “what is in their faces and in the windows and the streets beside and around them.” Fittingly, it is just those elements, particular to an individual’s specific moment, time and place, that capture the anonymous sense of the national spirit.
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Tara L. Masih
  • Date Published February 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-0-9825760-5-2
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 143pp
  • Price $14.00
  • Review by Alex Myers
Tara Masih’s short fiction has appeared in a number of well known journals for over a decade now, but Where the Dog Star Never Glows is her first collection of fiction. It does not disappoint. With seventeen stories, variety is the best word to describe this slim volume. The settings range from colonial India, to present-day Dominica, to the ‘60s USA, with lots of side roads taken. Though the prose style is consistently traditional – form is played with only slightly, and reality is always, more or less, real – the characters, themes, and content vary pleasantly, creating a dynamic and interesting collection.
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  • Book Type Poetry
  • by Patricia Jabbeh Wesley
  • Date Published August 2010
  • ISBN-13 978-1932870404
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 88pp
  • Price $14.95
  • Review by Renee Emerson
Where the Road Turns is a rich and textured collection of poems interested in gender roles, issues of cultural identity, and migration. The book opens with the poem “Cheede, My Bride: A Grebo Man Laments—1985,” a narrative poem from the perspective of a Grebo man who contemplates the role of his wife in society: “in Monrovia, women wear pants and a man / may walk around, twisting like a woman” and “they say women fell trees and men walk / upon them like bridges.” The first section of the book contains similar poems that are from the perspectives of tribal men and women, often directly addressing their lovers in a love song or lament. In “Love Song When Musu Answers Her Lover,” the plain diction and repetition of “Let us not make babies, Kono, my lover / Let us collect these timbers, scattered” authenticates the voice of the poem, allowing the reader to enter into a character that they may not be altogether familiar with.
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Ben Nickol
  • Date Published November 2015
  • ISBN-13 978-1-938466-50-2
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 142pp
  • Price $16.95
  • Review by Allyson Parsons
A collection of short stories that drips with artistry and revelatory truths, Where the Wind Can Find It is a masterful exploration of the struggle between who and where we were and are, and who we want to be.
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  • Book Type Fiction
  • by Sequoia Nagamatsu
  • Date Published May 2016
  • ISBN-13 978-1-62557-944-7
  • Format Paperback
  • Pages 162pp
  • Price $16.95
  • Review by MacKenzie Hamilton

Where We Go When All We Were Is Gone is a twelve story collection that throws readers headlong into the deepest depths of the human heart. Each story explores the real life vulnerability people deal with in their darkest hours while seamlessly enchanting the reader with characters that are magically fantastic. Readers will find themselves lost in the mix of these lovely yet terrifying stories.

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