How to Be a Woman and a Mother in America: Kendra DeColo’s I Am Not Trying to Hide My Hungers from the World
Kendra DeColo declares inspiring acts of femininity, motherhood, and sexuality while making it a point to showcase how these things become complicated within the archetypal standards of womanhood and misogyny in America.
Conjuring the Dead, but Make it Poetry: A Review of Dreaming of You by Melissa Lozada-Oliva
The constant change of poetic form, voice, and content drives Dreaming of You forward through the dark world created by Melissa Lozada-Oliva.
Talking to the Past in Percival Everett’s The Trees
Following last year’s critically acclaimed Telephone, Percival Everett’s The Trees weaves tropes of pulp-cop noir with trademark acuity and genre-bending inventiveness to deliver a swift, startlingly expansive take on the legacy of lynching in the American South.
Emilly Prado Spins Her Chicana Coming-of-Age Story in Funeral for Flaca
Prado perfectly encapsulates the insecurities of growing up and the never-ending search for identity in a society that tries to define and confine us at every chance it gets.
Collective Memories: Clint Smith’s How the Word Is Passed
As an educator, Smith believes that a true reckoning with America’s legacy of slavery would shift the ground we stand on. “How different might our country look,” he wonders, “if all of us fully understood what has happened here?” At various turns, questions of access underlie his journey. Not everyone can travel to these sites of memory, and Smith’s book serves to extend their reach.
Filling the Void: The Sunflower Cast A Spell To Save Us From The Void by Jackie Wang
The “waiting” suggests that the speaker has been pursuing a pathway out of the nightmare. Though the Asian market is an illuminating environment, the shiny products are creatures that want to maintain her in a continuous painful cycle.
Brian Broome’s Punch Me Up to the Gods
While Broome’s lived experiences are uniquely his, Punch Me Up to the Gods is a compelling and consequential read for anyone who has ever felt deeply different and alone.
It’s the Soul that Needs Surgery: Catherine Klatzker’s You Will Never Be Normal
In her debut novel, You Will Never Be Normal, memoirist, poet, and retired pediatric ICU nurse Catherine Klatzker comes to terms with her split-off “Parts”—her selves that hold dissociated and unprocessed memories.