Weekend Rumpus Roundup


First, Brandon Hicks gives us “Leonard: The Dad From A Different Generation.”

Next, Gayle Brandeis offers a personal and insightful portrait of female body image in the Saturday Essay, “Thunder, Thighs.” Before Brandeis’s own view of her thighs was changed forever, they were her “friends,” her “freedom.” After much introspection, Brandeis learns strategies for coping with the shame imposed on her from outside.

Meanwhile, hunger and beauty are binary themes that revolve around one another in Julie Marie Wade’s review of Natalie Eilbert’s Swan Feast. The poet uses the famous antique sculpture, the Venus of Willendorf, to analyze the ways her themes recur and evolve.

Then, Pooja Makhijani flees the racism of the US, only to find herself in a country where 74% of its citizens are ethnically Chinese. In her review, Makhijani exposes the under-reported failings of Singaporean author Kevin Kwan’s book, China Rich Girlfriend, which overlooks some of the enduring power struggles there.

In the Sunday Interview, Sarah Einstein talks to Dinty W. Moore about his “witty” nonfiction book, Dear Mister Essay Writer Guy. Sincerity, honesty, and apathy are important ideas in this thoughtful conversation.

Finally, Stephen Dau offers a “close, humane read of the complicated reality of life” in refugee camp in Brussels. He writes that, “This crisis is about refugees, certainly, as people, as individuals. But it is also about global income inequality.”

Read more of Max Gray at Big City Sasquatch or follow him on Twitter @City_Sasquatch. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Encounters, Mount Hope, Conte, tNY.press, and English Kills Review. He co-hosts the etymology podcast Words For Dinner and is a graduate of the Rutgers-Newark MFA program. More from this author →