Star Trek II, The Wrath of Khan, was Jen Girdish’s first brush with Leonard Nimoy’s mortality. Nimoy’s role as the famously stoic Spock captures Girdish’s attention in the Saturday Essay and serves as a nostalgic lens through which she examines her late father’s life. She wonders if Nimoy’s legacy offered them both the chance for “magical thinking.”
Then, in a review of R.A. Villanueva’s collection Reliquaria, Kenji Liu considers the “sinewy” poems that won the 2013 Prairie Schooner Prize. Colonial Catholicism and Baroque art contribute to the “musculature” of Villanueva’s book. Liu writes:
In a time when sustained engagement with a text seems to be devalued, this collection is one to read not just for pleasure, but also for intellectual sustenance.
Meanwhile, in the Sunday Interview, Anna March chats with Cristina Henriquez about the author’s third novel, The Book of Unknown Americans. Multiple first-person narrators, Henriquez admits, required her to keep separate files on her creations. The conversation touches on the immigrant experience in the state of Delaware and the book’s attendant sense of “almost there”—a complex and striking tone of “hope,” “promise,” “fear,” and “sorrow.”