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Reviews

Between Sex and Death: Deborah Landau’s Soft Targets

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Survival, for Landau, is both instinctual and ultimately pointless.

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The Violence of Forgetting: Jesse Ball’s The Divers’ Game

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His is not a language that trivializes violence; it’s a language that exposes it.

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Turning and Turning: Jericho Brown’s The Tradition

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[T]his is a book in direct conversation with literary tradition.

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A Beautiful Silver Screen: Amanda Lee Koe’s Delayed Rays of a Star

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[W]hat lies beneath the arcing paths of these stars, fueling and frustrating them?

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Expunging the Bogeyman: Sady Doyle’s Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers

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The root of these imagined, monstrous versions of women, Doyle argues, is fear.

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The Brink of Unbearable: Careen by Grace Shuyi Liew

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[I]t is as if I am learning a new language with each poem.

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Grounded by Circumstance: Tina Barr’s Green Target

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Barr is an astonishing image-maker, adept in creating significance through anthimeria.

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Both Aggressor and Victim: Adèle by Leïla Slimani

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Who is Adèle Robinson, really, and what is it, exactly, that happened to her?

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Remembering as Deconstruction: Eduardo Halfon’s Mourning

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To scrutinize the past, one must approach the walls between then and now.

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Everyone You Love Is Broke: The Not Wives by Carley Moore

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How do you go on when the losses seem unbearable?

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The (Pleasurable) Anxiety of (Aesthetic) Influence: Bill Berkson’s A Frank O’Hara Notebook

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Long after O’Hara died, O’Hara was still influencing, shaping, editing, Berkson.

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A Parcel of Stories: Hard Damage by Aria Aber

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The speaker in Hard Damage, it seems, is writing herself to life.

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Pay Attention: T Fleischmann’s Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through

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I’m hungry for truth and kids are just spouting facts up and down the street.

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Angry Reminders: Lee Ann Roripaugh’s Tsunami vs. the Fukushima 50

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Human beings like to make myths out of things we don’t understand.

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The Language of Grief: Where Reasons End by Yiyun Li

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To grieve is to demonstrate dedication to those we love.

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Beginning Again: Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous

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For Little Dog, putting language to memory becomes a way to survive.

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Modern Lives We Lived: Xuan Juliana Wang’s Home Remedies

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Social and economic forces are always pressing on the characters in Wang’s work.

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A Fierce Compassion: Women of Resistance: Poems for a New Feminism

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WOMEN OF RESISTANCE recognizes this reality with fierce compassion, and a lot of really fine poetry.

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