Book Club Blog
We’re thrilled to announce that our August Book Club selection is Wioletta Greg’s Swallowing Mercury!
In this celebrated debut from the prize-winning poet, Wiola looks back on her youth in a close-knit, agricultural community in 1980s Poland. Her memories are precise, intense, distinctive, sensual: a playfulness and whimsy rise up in the gossip of the village women, rumored visits from the Pope, and the locked room in the dressmaker’s house, while political unrest and predatory men cast shadows across this bright portrait....more
I still remember the time many (many) years ago, as an undergrad, when my professor dropped Christopher Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” and Sir Walter Ralegh’s response on the class and launched into a discussion of the pastoral tradition....more
We’re super excited to share that our July Book Club selection is New People by Danzy Senna! From the bestselling author of Caucasia, New People is a subversive and engrossing novel about race, class, and manners in contemporary America. Heartbreaking and darkly comic, New People is a bold and unfettered page-turner that challenges our every assumption about how we define one another, and ourselves....more
We’re excited to share that our June Book Club pick is The Tower of the Antilles by Achy Obejas! The Cubans in Obejas’s new story collection are haunted by an island: the island they fled, the island they’ve created, the island they were taken to or forced from, the island they long for, the island they return to, and the island that can never be home again....more
I’m always interested in the work of poets who use form in subversive ways, and while it’s true that the sonnet has long ceased to be just a love song, what Nikki Wallschlaeger does with it in her new collection Crawlspace, soon to be released by Bloof Books, is brilliant....more
We’re thrilled to share that our May Book Club pick is We Are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby! Samantha is the author of Meaty: Essays and creator of the blog “bitches gotta eat.” The essays in We Are Never Meeting in Real Life span topics as varied as living on a budget, explaining why Irby should be the next Bachelorette, a disastrous pilgrimage-slash-romantic-vacation to Nashville to scatter her estranged father’s ashes, and advice on how to navigate friendships with former drinking buddies who are now suburban moms....more
I am drawn to poetry about the difficulties of family, about the pain of feeling one is a disappointment to their parents, about the sense of separation that can come as a result. Chen Chen’s debut collection is filled with work which explores this universe....more
We’re very excited to share that our April Book Club pick is Gabrielle Bell’s much anticipated graphic memoir, Everything Is Flammable. Bell revisits her childhood home in the remote mountains of Northern California after her mother’s home, car, and belongings are suddenly swallowed up by a fire....more
It started, as it often does, with a recommendation from a friend, in this case Gabrielle Calvocoressi. She sent me an email saying “You have to look at this book.” I would have anyway, because I’ve been a fan of Adrian Matejka’s work for a long time, and in fact, I wanted his last book, The Big Smoke, for the Poetry Book Club but couldn’t make it happen....more
We’re very excited to share that our March Book Club pick is Marlena, the debut novel from Julie Buntin. Marlena tells the story of a powerful teenage friendship between two girls, and its aftermath. Edan Lepucki, author of the bestselling novel California, writes:
In Marlena, Julie Buntin revitalizes a classic story making it all her own with sensuous, vibrant prose and a narrator who feels deeply even as she feints certain painful truths about herself.
2016 quite a year, and the future is looking… interesting. But the Rumpus Book Clubs fight on, choosing books that challenge and delight and inspire month after month. We choose books that haven’t been released yet, which means our members get them before anyone else, and then we get to talk about each book with its author....more