Reviews

Violence and Tenderness: The Explosive Expert’s Wife by Shara Lessley

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Lessley’s poems remind us: “Because to cry’s / a sign, to cry is proof, / there’s life.”

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The Illusion of Wholeness: Sophie Collins’s Who is Mary Sue?

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When reading this book, expect your notions of speaker—and even what a book of poetry is—to be challenged.

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Unsung Choices: Blue Rose by Carol Muske-Dukes

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Can women ever fully escape the restrictions upon them, the risk to their bodies that comes from being born female?

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A Subjective Magic: Jenny Boully’s Betwixt-and-Between

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Boully splays open her own torso and readers divine what they need to from the spill of her organs.

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Revolutionary Anger: Rebecca Traister’s Good and Mad

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The most important idea within the book is that our anger, in all its shapes, is justified.

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An Important Book: Inheriting the War edited by Laren McClung

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There is no escape from the cradle of this shame.

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Unglued from Time: Shahriar Mandanipour’s Moon Brow

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An enjoyable and thought-provoking read, Moon Brow trades on its striking and unusual formal features to allude to the complexities and consequences of war.

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Personal to Universal: Robin Becker’s The Black Bear Inside Me

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Becker stands firmly on the shoulder of earlier lesbian-feminist poets while inhabiting and describing our current era of new challenges and old shibboleths.

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New-Old, Old-New: Erica Dawson’s When Rap Spoke Straight to God

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Dawson plays with many tropes—light and dark, the spiritual vs. the corporeal—while questioning the everyday myths that surround us.

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Twenty Years of Miseducation: Joan Morgan’s She Begat This

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Morgan has a lot of gaps to fill—and a lot of traps to potentially fall into.

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Form as Container: Samantha Zighelboim’s The Fat Sonnets

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Zighelboim almost has to break the form into pieces in order to speak; a fourteen-word poem is really only the echo of a sonnet.

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