Dr. Pepper Dark Berry Flavor; or Liquid Masochism

I haven’t posted anything in a long time. At least April. Maybe May. Anyway. I could have written about a lot of things such as my acceptance of “Toy Story 4″‘s existence, why I think “Aesop’s Fables” is chock full of bad advice or my surprising adoration of Billie Eillish’s debut album “WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?”, but instead I decided … Continue reading Dr. Pepper Dark Berry Flavor; or Liquid Masochism

“The Collected Schizophrenias: Essays” Review

“The Collected Schizophrenias: Essays” by Esmé Weijun Wang 202p. Graywolf Press. $16.00 I hate you. “I hate you” was what a shower told Esmé Weijun Wang during her first year of college. As she got older “shadowy demons” would pursue her. She would always narrowly dodge them. She also died. Or at least thought she was dead for a few months. Esmé Weijun Wang’s “The … Continue reading “The Collected Schizophrenias: Essays” Review

No, Not that Stormy: Review of "The Storm"

“The Storm” By Tomás González Translated from the Spanish by Andrea Rosenberg 174 pp. Archipelago Books. $16. “The Storm” is a short, dry but occasionally gripping novel about what happens when a storm tests the already strained ties of familial and economic relationships during 24 hours in a Columbian vacation destination. Twin brothers Mario and Javier and their father are going fishing to catch food … Continue reading No, Not that Stormy: Review of "The Storm"

Are We Free?: A Review of "The Hole" by José Revueltas

“The Hole” By José Revueltas Translated by Amanda Hopkinson and Sophie Hughes 77p. New Directions Books. $12.95. Most of us have at least glanced at one of the “inside look” into prison TV shows. Whether it’s “Orange is the New Black”, “Prison Break”, or “Scared Straight” we think that these TV shows give a somewhat honest portrayal of prison life. But as is the case … Continue reading Are We Free?: A Review of "The Hole" by José Revueltas

"Horsemen of the Sands" Review

“Horsemen of the Sands” By Leonid Yuzefovich Translated from the Russian by Marian Schwartz 232p. Archipelago Books. $16 Sometimes it’s better to just stick with appetizers instead of gorging an entree. The appetizers’ size allows (forces) you to manage how much you are eating. Plus the flavor doesn’t grow bland by the fourth bite since there are only two or three bites max. Also the … Continue reading "Horsemen of the Sands" Review

My 5 Favorite Books of 2018: Part 1: Contemporary Literature

If you wonder why I haven’t, you know, been writing a lot, it’s because I’ve been reading–a lot (115 books so far). Also I’ve been taking a break to realign my critical gears but I digress. This article is part 1 of 2. Last year I wrote a longish article about my favorite and least favorite books that I had read in 2017. Because I … Continue reading My 5 Favorite Books of 2018: Part 1: Contemporary Literature

"It’s Like a Conversation in Your Head—I Swear I’m Not Crazy": A Few Podcasts to Recommend to Your Friends Against Their Will

No one cares to speak to an unwilling listener. An arrow never lodges in a stone: often it recoils upon the sender of it. – Saint Jerome in a letter to Saint Augustine, the OG unwilling listener Is it possible to be a college student in 2018 and not subscribe to at least 3 podcasts? Can you even walk into a coffee shop and not … Continue reading "It’s Like a Conversation in Your Head—I Swear I’m Not Crazy": A Few Podcasts to Recommend to Your Friends Against Their Will

A Lack of Nuance: Review of "A Lucky Man: Stories" by Jamel Brinkley

A Lucky Man by Jamel Brinkley 240 pp. Graywolf Press. $26.00 In books such as Less Than Zero or Winesburg, Ohio when the characters are all affected by problems (nihilism and narcissism, and mob mentality and provincialism, respectively) their reactions are used as critiques of their milieu/generation. In A Lucky Man, Jamel Brinkley’s debut short story collection that follows black men and black boys from … Continue reading A Lack of Nuance: Review of "A Lucky Man: Stories" by Jamel Brinkley

Waiting for Another Novel: Review of "Waiting for Tomorrow" by Nathacha Appanah

Waiting for Tomorrow By Nathacha Appanah (1973-) Translated from the French by Geoffrey Strachan 156 pp. Graywolf Press. $16.00 If someone were to ask the question, “What would a novel that sacrifices basic narrative tools such as dialogue and the gradual release of a plot, but is full of beautiful descriptions look like?” the answer would be Waiting for Tomorrow. The story of Waiting for … Continue reading Waiting for Another Novel: Review of "Waiting for Tomorrow" by Nathacha Appanah

A Very Short Review of "The Kremlin Ball: (Material for a Novel)" by Curzio Malaparte

The Kremlin Ball by Curzio Malaparte (1898-1957) Translated from the Italian by Jenny McPhee 223 pp. New York Review of Books. $15.95 I believe that because of our innate idealism (and our data regurgitation education system) we like to think of history as a long list of dates that act as little islands. We arrive at one island and then are catapulted to the next … Continue reading A Very Short Review of "The Kremlin Ball: (Material for a Novel)" by Curzio Malaparte