Monthly Archives: November 2018

This Week’s News You Can Use

Jim Kempton, author of First We Surf, Then We Eat, was interviewed by Cooking with Amy on November 25.

An excerpt from Vancouver Noir, edited by Sam Wiebe, was published on CrimeReads on November 27.

Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore, author of Sketchtasy, was interviewed by Jezebel on November 20.

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This Week’s Hot Reviews

Revolutionary Threads: Rastafari, Social Justice, and Cooperative Economics
Bobby Sullivan | Akashic Books | 9781617756559 | December 2018

“Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, Revolutionary Threads: Rastafari, Social Justice, and Cooperative Economics is a groundbreaking study.”—Midwest Book Review

Liza Jane & The Dragon
Laura Lippman, illustrated by Kate Samworth | Akashic Books | 9781617756610 | October 2018

“Written with an impressive originality by Laura Lippman and illustrated with the exceptional artwork of Kate Samworth, Liza Jane & the Dragon is unreservedly recommended.”—Midwest Book Review

The Eye: An Insider’s Memoir of Masterpieces, Money, and the Magnetism of Art
Philippe Costamagna, translated by Frank Wynne | New Vessel Press | 9781939931580 | August 2018

“An insider’s look at the dramatic world of attributing and dating art. . . . Delightful.”—Introspective Magazine

A Shameful Life: Ningen Shikkaku
Osamu Dazai, translated by Mark Gibeau | Stone Bridge Press | 9781611720440 | November 2018

“Powerful. . . a fascinating psychological portrait, of someone trying (or rather, constantly failing) to come to terms with a self they find unbearable.”—The Complete Review

The Buddhist Swastika and Hitler’s Cross: Rescuing a Symbol of Peace from the Forces of Hate
T.K. Nakagaki | Stone Bridge Press | 9781611720457 | September 2018

“I’m fascinated by Buddhist priest T.K. Nakagaki’s reflections on why symbols hold such power; how the swastika has been used for good across the globe; including as a motif in synagogues; and why Hitler adopted it to symbolize his own hateful philosophy.”—Lion’s Roar

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Best Books of 2018

Brain Pickings Best of 2018:

The Advocate Best “Books We Read in 2018”:

Boston Globe Best of 2018:

Huffington Post Best Fiction of 2018:

  • Comemadre by Roque Larraquy, translated by Heather Cleary

Publishers Weekly Graphic Novels Critics Poll:

The Comics Beat Best of 2018:

Hyperallergic Best Graphic Novels of 2018:

World Literature Today 75 Notable Translations of 2018:

A.V. Club 10 Favorite Books of 2018:

  • Comemadre by Roque Larraquy, translated by Heather Cleary

Library Journal Best Books 2018:

School Library Journal Best Books 2018:

Entropy Best of 2018:



LitHub Best Books of 2018:

Autostraddle Best LGBT Books of 2018:

Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2018:


  • The Right Intention by Andrés Barba, translated by Lisa Dillman
  • Mourning by Eduardo Halfon, translated by Lisa Dillman and Daniel Hahn
  • Fox by Dubravka Ugresic, translated by Ellen Elias-Bursac and David Williams
  • The Lake on Fire by Rosellen Brown

Picture Books:

Middle Grade:

Young Adult:


Publishers Weekly Best Books of 2018:

Washington Post Best Books of 2018:

NPR’s Book Concierge: Best Books of 2018:

A.V. Club Best Comics of 2018:

VICE/Broadly 10 Best Books We Read in 2018:

Shelf Awareness 2018 Best Children’s and Teen Books of the Year:

Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books 2018:

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This Week’s Hot Reviews

Beginnings: The Homeward Journey of Donovan Manypenny
Thomas D. Peacock | Holy Cow! Press | 9780998601052 | November 2018

“Peacock delves into Donovan’s process of learning about how the great migration created the Ojibwe people and how it allows him to re-create himself as an Ojibwe person, along with the help, intentional and unintentional, of many along the way.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune

Tamayo: The New York Years
Carmen Ramos | D GILES | 9781911282150 | November 2017

“Engagingly written and richly illustrated, this exhibition catalogue is a prime example of what this genre of publication can offer readers—a sophisticated analysis of a key period in Tamayo’s career that is informative for scholars while remaining accessible and interesting to students and general audiences.”—Panorama: Journal of the Association of Historians of American Art

Death of a Rainmaker: A Dust Bowl Mystery
Laurie Loewenstein | Akashic Books/Kaylie Jones Books | 9781617756658 | October 2018

“The plot is solid in Death of a Rainmaker, but what makes Loewenstein’s novel so outstanding is the cast of characters she has assembled . . . Death of a Rainmaker is a superb book, one that sets the reader right down amid some of the hardest times our country has faced, and lets us feel those hopeful farmers’ despair as they witness their dreams turning to dust.”—Mystery Scene Magazine

In Country
Hugh Martin | BOA Editions | 9781942683704 | November 2018

“Hugh Martin’s second poetry collection In Country delves into the war in Iraq from the American soldier’s perspective. The language and listing quality of his memories are plain and simple, but the stories they tell are not. Readers see the complicated relationship that the American militia, both as individuals and as a collective, have with Iraqi civilians.”—Arkansas International Review

Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky
David Bowles | Cinco Puntos Press | 9781941026717 | May 2018

“While certainly a treasure trove for storytellers, this is also highly valuable as a classroom resource for units on Mesoamerican history or examinations of how a place’s myths are inherently linked to its history.”—Bulletin for the Center for Children’s Books Review

The Naked Woman
Armonía Somers, translated by Kit Maude | The Feminist Press at CUNY | 9781936932436 | November 2018

“Somers’ carefully-crafted novel reveals the effects that living in a society in which women are repressed has on both women and men.”—Asymptote

Something Like Breathing
Angela Readman | And Other Stories | 9781911508304 | January 2019

“This painstakingly rendered, gorgeous novel is pervaded by a sense of tense mystery . . . a skilled & beautiful portrait of a wonderful gift masked as darkness.”—Foreword Reviews

First We Surf, Then We Eat
Jim Kempton | Prospect Park Books | 9781945551338 | August 2018

First We Surf, Then We Eat isn’t just a killer cookery book, but reads as an incredibly personal, near biographical look at surfing and some of it’s most celebrated personalities over the years.”—Mad to Live

The Vagabond Valise
Siris | Conundrum Press | 9781772620276 | October 2018

“The crackpot visual humour Siris is known for shines on each page, making any new reader an instant fan.”—Vue Weekly

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This Week’s News You Can Use

An excerpt from Amy Irvine’s Desert Cabal: A New Season in the Wilderness was published in High Country News on November 12.

The November 16 issue of Shelf Awareness included an interview with K.D. Miller, author of Late Breaking.

Amy Chavez was interviewed by Japan Today on November 19 about Amy’s Guide to Best Behavior in Japan: Do It Right and Be Polite!

Order of the Sacred Earth author Skylar Wilson was interviewed on the Wiki Politiki Radio Show on November 13.

Charles Phoenix, author of Addicted to Americana, was a guest on KPCC’s Air Talk on November 19.

Spine magazine interviewed Justine Bateman about her book Fame on November 19.

Beautiful Music author Michael Zadoorian was a guest on the Neil Haley Show on November 14.

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This Week’s News You Can Use

Book Page interviewed Octavio Solis, author of Retablos, on November 12.

Gala Mukomolova, author of Without Protection, was interviewed in the Michigan Quarterly on November 9.

A new poem by Ashley Toliver, author of Spectra, was published by LitHub on November 7.

An interview with Nick Zinner, photographer behind 131 Different Things, was published on Popular Photography on November 7.

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This Week’s Hot Reviews

Blue Label
Eduardo Sánchez Rugeles, translated by Paul Filev | Turtle Point Press | 9781885983572 | October 2018

“An interesting glimpse of Venezuelan life around 2000, Blue Label . . . capture[s] teenage self-awareness (and its limitation) well. . . . [Music] plays a prominent role in the story, background sound-color (and lyrics) giving the story a scored, cinematic feel.”—The Complete Review

My Real Name is Hanna
Tara Lynn Masih | Mandel Vilar Press | 9781942134510 | September 2018

“Masih’s telling manages to bring together a gripping, coming-of-age narrative with an impeccably researched setting. . . . Hanna’s veracity and indelible spirit honor the subject and the people exhibited by the author in this highly readable, affecting novel.”—Historical Novel Society

Permanent Exhibit
Matthew Vollmer | BOA Editions | 9781942683681 | September 2018

“Like so many of us, Vollmer is obsessed with the everyday occurrences that provide him immediate feedback, the small joys or indignities that make each day unique from the one that came before it, but it is all connected, like the smallest, most faint stars in the sky, to the enormous constellations that we can all see with the naked eye.”—Carve Magazine

The Remainder
Alia Trabucco Zerán | Coffee House Press | 9781566895507 | August 2019

“You could call The Remainder a literary kaleidoscope: look at it one way and you see how the past lays a crippling hand on the generation that follows political catastrophe; shift the focus and you’re plunged into a darkly comic road trip with a hungover trio in an empty hearse chasing a lost coffin across the Andes cordillera.”—The Spectator

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This Week’s News You Can Use

Doug Segal, author of the memoir Struck, was interviewed on the Jiggy Jaguar Show on November 1.

The Creative Nonfiction podcast interviewed Animals Strike Curious Poses author Elena Passarello on November 2.

Amy Irvine was interviewed about Desert Cabal: A New Season in the Wilderness by Adventure Journal on October 31.

The Just Bernard Show interviewed Hallie Iglehart Austen about The Heart of the Goddess: Art, Myth and Mediations of the World’s Sacred Feminine on October 23.

We Matter: Athletes and Activism author Etan Thomas was interviewed on Roland Martin Unfiltered on October 31.

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This Week’s Hot Reviews

A Rebel in Gaza: Behind the Lines of the Arab Spring, One Woman’s Story
Asmaa al-Ghoul and Selim Nassib, translated by Mike Mitchell | DoppelHouse Press | 9780998777023 | November 2018

“Refreshing and eye-opening . . . . I would recommend this memoir to anyone interested in the ongoing conflict in Gaza, or to anyone who wishes to read a thrilling memoir by a strong, brave and inspiring woman living under difficult circumstances.”sister-hood

Desert Cabal: A New Season in the Wilderness
Amy Irvine | Torrey House Press | 9781937226978 | November 2018

“The slim volume is a lyrical and raw conversation between Irvine and Abbey that is part tribute, part memoir, and part polemic. It’ll get you thinking about the state of the desert, the fate of the wilderness movement and the actions we all need to take to save the places we love (including leaving them alone).”Adventure Journal

Follow the Sun
Edward J. Delaney | Turtle Point Press | 9781885983558 | June 2018

“A dramatic and action-filled climax that’s certainly worth waiting for.”—New Pages

How I Found God in Everyone and Everywhere: An Anthology of Spiritual Memoirs
Edited by Andrew M. Davis and Philip Clayton | Monkfish Book Publishing | 9781939681881 | September 2018

“A thought-provoking collection of personal accounts of panentheism, by 11 leading spiritual writers and teachers including Deepak Chopra and Rupert Sheldrake. Entirely compatible with modern science and astrophysics, panentheism is the contemporary spiritual shift away from a God located ‘up above’ toward an immanent Divine that exists right here, all around us, within everything and ourselves and suggests an interconnected cosmos in which each of its parts exist only in relationship to the other parts. Highly recommended.”—Yoga Magazine

The Sketchbook of Loish
Lois van Baarle | 3dtotal Publishing | 9781909414549 | April 2018

“This is a beautiful and inspiring artbook. One of 2018’s best artbooks. I highly recommend it to fans of her work. You’ll appreciate her art more when you know the effort she has put in to come to where she is today.”—Parka Blogs

Post-Traumatic Hood Disorder
David Tomas Martinez | Sarabande Books | 9781946448095 | March 2018

“The wild ostentation of late 20th- and early 21st-century America becomes the prism through which readers of David Tomas Martinez’s Post Traumatic Hood Disorder. . . perceive might and right, ennui and love and solitude and the oceanic depths of history.”—America: The Jesuit Review

131 Different Things
Zachary Lipez, photos by Nick Zinner, design by Stacy Wakefield | Akashic Books | 9781617756672 | November 2018

“A spot-on take on urban life, frustration, and flawed humanity, with distinctive visuals to accompany the knowing prose.”—LitHub

Vancouver Noir
Edited by Sam Wiebe | Akashic Books | 9781617756597 | November 2018

“The beauty of the Akashic series of noir short story anthologies is that they offer local writers a chance to say ‘here’s our town.’ This crop of writers, assembled and edited by Sam Wiebe, succeeds in a gritty, moody way.”—New York Journal of Books

Death of a Rainmaker: A Dust Bowl Mystery
Laurie Loewenstein | Akashic Books | 9781617756658 | October 2018

Death of a Rainmaker is far more than a murder mystery set in the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. It is a poignant recollection of the desperation of farmers whose land, livestock, and household are in foreclosure, a stunning description of a dust storm that leaves imaginary specks of dirt on the reader’s neck, a sensitive rendering of tough times and their toll on the psyche.”—Historical Novel Society

Tigerbelle: The Wyomia Tyus Story
Wyomia Tyus and Elizabeth Terzakis | Akashic Books | 9781617756580 | September 2018

Tigerbelle: The Wyomia Tyus Story is a book all fans of any sport, but particularly those who love track and field, will enjoy. But it also covers an equally important slice of history, both for HBCUs and women’s sports, that should never be forgotten nor undervalued.”—Tennessee Tribune

Since When
Bill Berkson | Coffee House Press | 9781566895293 | November 2018

“Berkson was the ultimate fly on the wall, and through his evocative writing the reader gets to be the same.”—Ploughshares

Jenny Boully | Coffee House Press | 9781566895101 | April 2018

“Boully’s lyric essays, which wander through disparate histories, myths, and stories, produce emotional truth in their ordering of disorder. Her essays, like lovers, follow desire in the hope that it will take them somewhere new.”—Ploughshares

The Anarchist Who Shared My Name
Pablo Martín Sánchez, translated by Jeff Diteman | Deep Vellum Publishing | 9781941920718 | December 2018

“Martín Sánchez gives a good picture of the Spanish-émigré scene in Paris and the revolutionary ambitions—including the role of Blasco Ibáñez—as well as the anarchist scene of the early twentieth century more generally. . . . An impressive picture of the Spain (and the exiled-Spaniards) situation of those years.”—The Complete Review

All Soul Parts Returned
Bruce Beasley | BOA Editions | 9781942683452 | September 2017

“This is a major book by an astounding writer. . . . Beasley reminds us that great writing is great writing wherever you find it.”—America: The Jesuit Review

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In Brief: This Week’s News You Can Use

Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore was interviewed in the Metro Weekly about her book Sketchtasy on October 25.

An excerpt from Camille Acker’s Training School for Negro Girls was published in Electric Literature on October 24.

On October 24, Michelle Tea was interviewed in the Austin Chronicle for her book Against Memoir.

Elaine Katzenberger, publisher at City Lights, was highlighted on Literary Hub on October 26.

Anastasia Higginbotham was interviewed about Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness on Atlanta NPR affiliate WABE’s Closer Look with Rose Scott on October 26.

On October 27, Nicole Skibola was interviewed in Marin County Independent Journal about her book Wakeful Night.

An excerpt from A Stranger’s Pose by Emmanuel Iduma was published on the Millions on October 29.

Hallie Inglehart Austen was interviewed about her book Heart of the Goddess on The Spark with Stephanie James on October 17.

Authors Skylar Wilson and Jennifer Listug were interviewed on The Spirit Seeker BlogTalk Radio show on October 18 about Order of the Sacred Earth: An Intergenerational Vision of Love and Action.

BlogTalk Radio’s La Femme de Prose interviewed Doug Segal about Struck on October 29.

An excerpt from Now You See the Sky by Catharine H. Murray was published in Inspired Parenting Magazine’s October 2018 issue.

Justine Bateman was interviewed on The Adam Carolla Show podcast on October 24 about her book Fame: The Hijacking of Reality.

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