Chris Abani’s The Secret History of Las Vegas is part thriller/murder mystery, part indictment against the brutality and injustice of apartheid in South Africa, but largely it is a reworking of pulp fiction distinguished by a veneer of weirdness and relieved by patches of appreciable beauty and originality.
Tag Archives: Reviews
Hope is the common thread running through and connecting these one hundred and eighteen chapters, chapters which combine in unexpected ways and often jump out from the narrative, displaying the techniques of the short story. Hope is the thing that holds the narrator fixed to the earth, even as she faces her own personal and private demons.
Last night, a friend asked me to list off my favorite reads from 2013. This is the sort of question that’s hard for a publisher since, of course, all I do is read books. Especially with the 2013 Literary Awards Program under my belt, I’ve probably juggled several hundred manuscripts in the past few months […]
Author Tom Noyes’ collection Come By Here is a demonstration of how setting ought to be treated in fiction: as a means to highlight a character’s experience of place. In this excellent collection of six stories and a novella, Noyes depicts characters around the country …
Watch an expert carpenter mitre crown moulding, and you get the effect of Perle Besserman’s 2013 novel about turning points …
Sheila R. Lamb reviews Light Lifting by Alexander MacLeod. Light Lifting Author: Alexander MacLeod Biblioasis, 2010 ISBN: 978-1-897231-94-4 CAD $19.95/US $16.95 Light Lifting by Alexander MacLeod is anything but light. In a collection of seven short stories, his characters face the physical reality of life, death, illness, and exhaustion. They are fighters, they […]
Kurt Cobain once said: I’d rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I am not. In her short story collection What Boys Like, Amy Jones illustrates many characters who, in these fifteen brilliantly well-crafted tales, much like Cobain, revel in their own uniqueness of who they are, rather than who they are not. Jones takes great care to explore the tenuous, callous and often humorous boundaries of human relationships, while maintaining one consistent theme, it seems: everyone has something to lose.
Recently, I have been trying to understand how women, as lovers, observers, as teachers and veterans, mothers and wives, and especially as female poets, understand and feel about war in all its many forms. Jehanne Dubrow, in her third poetry collection, Stateside, addresses a sub-culture often without recognition: the women waiting at home for the men who are deployed overseas. Her collection digs into the emotional wax and wan that can build, distress, destroy, or strengthen, both a woman and her marriage.
Sheila Lamb reviews Once by Rebecca Rosenblum
One thing I want to see more of is variety on the SFWP journal. To this end, I pulled in Ryan Sparks as the editor about a year ago. Our goal is to quietly expand upon the journal’s mission. Initially, back in 2002, the journal existed to feature Awards Program participants. Then we branched out […]