Monthly Archives: April 2019

This Week’s Hot News

Out Magazine included Jericho Brown’s The Tradition (Copper Canyon Press), Franny Choi’s Soft Science (Alice James Books), and Camonghne Felix’s Build Yourself A Boat (Haymarket Books) on its April 5 list of “Queer Books to Read in April.”

In an interview with the Boston Globe on April 11, poet Major Jackson recommended Deborah Landau’s Soft Targets, Paisley Rekdal’s Nightingale, and Jericho Brown’s The Tradition (all Copper Canyon Press).

The May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine featured Paisley Rekdal’s The Nightingale (Copper Canyon Press) and Jan-Henry Gray’s Documents (BOA Editions).

Renewal: How Nature Awakens Our Creativity, Compassion and Joy by Andres Edwards (New Society Publishers was excerpted in Yes Magazine on April 10.

Book Riot’s April 15 list of “Queer Poetry Collections to Read During National Poetry Month” was dominated by Consortium titles: Franny Choi’s Soft Science (Alice James Books), Kenji C. Liu’s Monsters I Have Been (Alice James Books), Jericho Brown’s The Tradition (Copper Canyon Press), jayy dodd’s The Black Condition Ft. Narcissus (Nightboat Books), Alison C. Rollins’s Library of Small Catastrophes (Copper Canyon Press), Camonghne Felix’s Build Yourself A Boat (Haymarket Books), and Fatima Asghar & Safia Elhillo’s anthology The Breakbeat Poets Vol. 3: Halal If You Hear Me (Haymarket Books).

Crime Reads interviewed Leye Adenle, author of When Trouble Sleeps (Cassava Republic Press), on April 11.

Elizabeth J. Coleman, editor of HERE: Poems for the Planet (Copper Canyon Press), was featured in an April 15 article on Literary Hub about climate change.

Lina Wolff’s The Polyglot Lovers (trans. Saskia Vogel; And Other Stories) was a Publishers Weekly Pick of the Week on April 15.

Michael Carroll, author of Stella Maris: And Other Key West Stories (Turtle Point Press), was interviewed on Gil Roth’s podcast, The Virtual Memories Show, on April 15.

The Adroit Journal interviewed Anna Moschovakis, author of Eleanor, or, The Rejection of the Progress of Love (Coffee House Press), on April 11.

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This Week’s Award Winners

The longlist for the 2019 Best Translated Book Awards includes Pretty Thingsby Virginie Despentes, translated by Emma Ramadan (Feminist Press); Bottom of the Sky by Rodrigo Fresán, translated by Will Vanderhyden (Open Letter); Bride and Groom by Alisa Ganieva, translated by Carol Apollonio (Deep Vellum); People in the Room by Norah Lange, translated by Charlotte Whittle (And Other Stories); Comemadre by Roque Larraquy, translated by Heather Cleary (Coffee House); Bricks and Mortar by Clemens Meyer, translated by Katy Derbyshire (Fitzcarraldo Editions); After the Winter by Guadalupe Nettel, translated by Rosalind Harvey (Coffee House); Transparent City by Ondjaki, translated by Stephen Henighan (Biblioasis); Öræfï by Ófeigur Sigurðsson, translated by Lytton Smith (Deep Vellum); Fox by Dubravka Ugresic, translated by Ellen Elias-Bursac and David Williams (Open Letter); and the easiness and the loneliness by Asta Olivia Nordenhof, translated by Susanna Nied (Open Letter).

The 2018 IPPY Award winners have been announced! Congratulations to Perfect Conditions, by Vanessa Blakeslee (Curbside Splendor Publishing); All We Know of Pleasure: Poetic Erotica by Women, edited by Enid Shomer (Blair/Carolina Wren Press); Paper is White, by Hilary Zaid (Bywater Books); The Fifth Woman, by Nona Caspers (Sarabande Books); When a Woman Rises, by Christine Eber (Cinco Puntos Press); Death’s Echoes, by Penny Mickelbury (Bywater Books); Love All, by Rachel Spangler (Bywater Books); andFreedom Fighters and Hell Raisers: A Gallery of Memorable Southerners, by Hal Crowther (Blair/Carolina Wren Press).

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This Week’s Hot Reviews

Let’s Tell This Story Properly
Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi | Transit Books | 9781945492228 | April 2019
“Time after time, Makumbi succeeds in making the familiar strange, as well as the reverse. This is a collection to savor in bits and bite-sized portions; there are too many pungencies to swallow in one gulp.”—New York Journal of Books

Original Prin 
Randy Boyagoda | Biblioasis | 9781771962452 | May 2019
“One of the best satirical writers today. . . . immediately funny.”—The American Conservative

They Gall Me George: The Untold Story of Black Train Porters and the Birth of Modern Canada 
Cecil Foster | Biblioasis | 9781771962612 | May 2019
“Mr. Foster’s well-written book about black train porters contains a wealth of information that is illuminating, revealing and, at times, disappointing. The beauty of the Canadian railroad had its ugly side, too.”—The Washington Times

Aurora Borealice
Joan Steacy | Conundrum Press | 9781772620375
“The art is printed in beautiful black and white—with rich, intense grays, which add atmosphere, depth and warmth…Alice has a big, open mind and her playful imagination is rendered and expressed in the aesthetic of the book.”—PRISM International

Around Harvard Square
C.J. Farley | Akashic Books | 9781617757143 | April 2019
“A smart, satirical novel about surviving the racial and cultural tensions ratcheted up in the elite Harvard hothouse. Farley has created a marvelously engaging and diverse set of characters, at the center of which is a nerdy Jamaican American with a philosophical bent and his cohort of oddballs struggling to win a spot on Harvard’s brainy humor magazine, which provides a springboard for Farley to dive into the ethics of comedy, among other subjects.”—The National Book Review

ESL or You Weren’t Here
Aldrin Valdez | Nightboat Books | 9781937658861 |
“In their debut collection of poems, Pinoy writer and visual artist Aldrin Valdez conjures a constellation of identity through the remnants. Memories, photographs, letters, transcriptions, artworks, and pop culture references cleave to reconcile the joy and trauma inherent in a duplicitous, multi-hyphenate world. . . . ESL or You Weren’t Here presents a portrait of their journey to awakening: they are American; they are Pinoy. They are gendered and non-gendered; a multi-lingual, multi-cultural, queer “bakla” all at the same time. The 27 multi-chaptered poems depict this tender, heart breaking, deeply intimate, open and satisfyingly sweet journey.”—The Brooklyn Rail

The Organic No-Till Farming Revolution: High-Production Methods for Small-Scale Farmers
Andrew Mefferd | New Society Publishers | 9780865718845 | March 2019
Article, Rapid City Journal, April 8, 2018
“The book has an excellent introductory conversation about how no-till systems work, its advantages and disadvantages. Though the book is aimed at small-scale farmers, there are strategies and information that can be easily utilized by backyard gardeners.”—The Rapid City Journal

Useful Phrases for Immigrants: Stories
May Lee Chai | Blair | 9780932112767 | October 2018
“[A] wonderfully quirky book of stories.”—Asian Review of Books

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This Week’s Top Reviews

A Year From Today
Stacy Szymaszek | Nightboat Books | 9781937658762 | September 2018
“‘Daily writing’ suggests both a method, writing through the temporal constraint of the journal, and a content, something like the metabolism of a life, maybe but not necessarily punctuated by excitement or crisis. . . . ‘Declare’ is Szymaszek’s signature verb of the journal form, which is to say that the method of observation, day by day, turns trivial content into a program for life-writing.”—Believer Logger

The Rosie Result
Grahame Simsion | Text Publishing | 9781925773828 | May 2019
“Simsion hits just the right balance between serious literary exploration of social issues and the delightfully humorous (mis)adventures of an unusual but good-intentioned modern family.”—New York Journal of Books

“Don’s voice is particular—his intelligence extraordinary—and he is oblivious of how funny he is. His relationships with others are unique and excellently written. . . . Simsion’s novel depicts autism in such unremarkable ways that its story becomes remarkable in the telling.”—Foreword Reviews

The A26
Pascal Garnier, trans. Melanie Florence | Gallic Books | 9781908313164 | April 2015
The Front Seat Passenger
Pascal Garnier, trans. Jane Aitken | Gallic Books | 9781908313638 | September 2014
The Islanders
Pascal Garnier, trans. Emily Boyce | Gallice Books | 9781908313720 | June 2015
“In Garnier’s narratives, character weaknesses often nudge fate into stark tragedy. He explored the frailties of human nature as they are revealed in ordinary situations that conceal forthcoming major consequences. . . . For all their action-filled plots, Garnier’s novels concentrate on how external forces—or imperceptible inner dynamisms—assail the vulnerable spots in individual defense mechanisms, setting off behavior that suddenly reshapes the here and now.”—Arts Fuse

The Oasis This Time: Living and Dying with Water in the West
Rebecca Lawton | Torrey House Press | 9781937226930 | March 2019
“Rebecca Lawton’s powerful and poetic The Oasis This Time celebrates water as a precious natural resource. The collection is as diverse as it is illuminating. Each essay addresses a unique topic, but all are anchored by keen observations of the environment and musings on alternative solutions to pressing environmental problems.”—Foreword Reviews

Je Nathanaël
Nathanaël | Nightboat Books | 9781937658915 | September 2018
“Nathanaël drastically, for instance, reconfigures presence and non-presence, identity and non-identity, of the author (speaker, lover, and so on) and the addressed, beloved reader. Where once, for Gide — and modernity writ large — the author was a metaphysical presence, an authority, whether absolute or negative, the author here is temporally-fixed and partial: self-aware, both author and reader, cognizant of the petite-celebrity the 20th C. author has since passed through, always calling attention to the writer’s predilection and finitude.”—Full Stop Magazine

Crosslight for Youngbird
Asiya Wadud | Nightboat Books | 9781937658878 | October 2018
“It is a poetics of responsibility as much as a poetics of response, an ethics of care and an erotics of promise—an interiority received, taken in, secreted. It is with this growing awareness of our own complacency amid the normalization of state violence and terror that Asiya Wadud begins Crosslight for Youngbird; by re-orienting our moral compass and the language by which we articulate and conceptualize migration or how we fail to, Wadud becomes both archivist and poet, itinerant and cartographer, inhabiting migratory routes as well as sites of detainment so as to show us our own subjective positions within this shared space we call our world.”—The Brooklyn Rail

All the Fierce Tethers
Lia Purpura | Sarabande Books | 9781946448309 | April 2019
“Witty, friendly, and provocative, Purpura fosters a belief in the authenticity of interaction.”—World Literature Review

“All the Fierce Tethers is both a marvel of language and a treatise on our taking the time to stop, look around, and pay attention to our surroundings and, concurrently, to acknowledge the interconnectedness of life and its objects. Written in vibrant, luxurious prose, Purpura leaves her readers looking at the world in a distinct and more vibrant way.”—Arkansas International

Sun and Earth/Sol Y Tierra: Views Beyond the U.S.-Mexico Border, 1988-2018
Emily Matyas | Daylight Books | 9781942084631 | May 2019
“Emily Matyas however does not engage in a discussion about border security but shows with a sympathetic eye scenes of what she has encountered when crossing the border between Mexico and the United States in the last 30 years which she has done dozens of times. . . . Sol y Tierra is a convincing illustration of empathy.”—F-Stop Magazine

Stella Maris: And Other Key West Stories
Michael Carroll | Turtle Point Press | 9781885983688 | April 2019
“Often brutal and painful, Stella Maris knifes into religion, whiteness, class, sex, beauty, Southernness, and aging at the margins of the United States’s southernmost point. . . . What’s sordid and tawdry is exposed as a pedestrian, communal obsession; Key West is just the place where everyone’s forced to admit it.” —Foreword Reviews

Letters to Goya: Poems, Titles and Letters to the Dead
James Magee | Cinco Puntos Press | 9781941026984 | January 2019
“This collection is an adventure in itself…Magee impresses with his concrete imagery, lyrical counterpoint, and subtle internal rhyme schemes.”—New York Journal of Books

Order of the Sacred Earth: An Intergenerational Vision of Love and Action
Matthew Fox, Skylar Wilson, Jennifer Listug | Monkfish Books | 9781939681867 | July 2018
“Hats off once again to the inimitable Matthew Fox who refuses at the age of 76 to still his voice or diminish his vision.”—Spirituality and Practice

The Hope Fault
Tracy Farr | Gallic Books | 9781910709436  | October 2018
“Farr’s examination of amplectant bonds as equally capable of holding families together as they are of tearing them apart feels as real as fiction gets.”—World Literature Today

“Muslim” A Novel
Zahia Rahmani | Deep Vellum Publishing | 9781941920756 | March 2019
“This is the ethical and political terrain at stake for Rahmani, whose literary fiction is an instrument for truths that as yet have nowhere else to be heard. That the very nature of our political regimes requires intervention by way of fiction suggests that literature has an indispensable role to play in the ongoing work of justice.”—Public Books

Revenge of the Translator
Brice Matthieussent, translated by Emma Ramadan | Deep Vellum Publishing | 9781941920695 | September 2018
“Confusing, sexy, intelligent, funny, disarming, irresistible . . . one of the great metatextual novels of the 21st century (so far), and it’s difficult for me to be comfortable with a statement that bold, but honestly, it really is that good. If you enjoy the act of reading at all, get it, read it, teach it, savor it.”—Carolina Quarterly

Wounds into Wisdom: Healing Intergenerational Jewish Trauma
Rabbi Tirzah Firestone | Monkfish Book Publishing | 9781948626026 | April 2019
“Meaningful and relevant!”—Light of Consciousness Magazine

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This Week’s Hot News

Jason Novak’s Baseball Epic (Coffee House Press) was included on the Paris Review on April 5 and Wisconsin Public Radio on March 28.

Publishers Weekly spotlighted Tirzah Firestone and Wounds into Wisdom: Healing Intergenerational Jewish Trauma (Monkfish Books Publishing) in an article published April 8.

The A.V. Club published an exclusive preview of Ben Sears’s House of the Black Spot (Koyama Press) on April 9.

An interview with Nina Revoyr, author of A Student of History (Akashic Books), was published on CrimeReads on April 9.

World Literature Today included Bride & Groom (Deep Vellum Publishing) by Alisa Ganieva on their list of “Contemporary Russian Language Literature to Read Right Now” on March 29.

The Literary Hub’s list of “19 Books You Should Read This April” included the Lookout Books anthology Tresspass: Ecotone Essayists Beyond the Boundaries of Place, Identity, and Feminism.

Stacy Szymaszek was interviewed about A Year From Today (Nightboat Books) in Open Space Moma on March 29.

BOMB magazine interviewed Gracie Leavitt about her book Livingry (Nightboat Books) on March 19.

The Rumpus published two new poems by Kiki Petrosino, author of Witch Wife (Sarabande Books), on April 4.

Fast Company included Moon Shine by Rachel Boillot and Homelands (both Daylight Books) by Pieter de Vos on its list of “127 New Movies, TV Shows, Albums, and Books You Must Check Out This April.”

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This Week’s Hot News

Words Without Borders published a new short story by Alia Trabucco Zerán, author of The Remainder (Coffee House Press) in its April 2019 issue.

Gala Mukomolova’s Without Protection (Coffee House Press), Franny Choi’s Soft Science (Alice James Books), Michael Earl Craig’s Woods and Clouds Interchangeable (Wave Books), editors Fatimah Asghar and Safia Elhillo’s The Breakbeat Poets Vol. 3: Halal If You Hear Me (both Haymarket Books), and Camonghne Felix’s Build Yourself a Boat (Haymarket Books) were all included on the Chicago Review of Books’s March 29 list of best April books.

André Alexis’s Days by Moonlight (Coach House Books), Elizabeth Kleinhenz’s Germaine: The Life of Germaine Greer (Scribe US), Jason Novak’s Baseball Epic (Coffee House Press), and Duanwad Pimwana’s Arid Dreams: Stories (trans. Mui Poopoksakul; The Feminist Press at CUNY) were included on Vol. 1 Brooklyn’s April 1 book preview.

Elisa Callow, author of The Urban Forager: Culinary Exploring & Cooking on L.A.’s Eastside (Prospect Park Books) was interviewed on Southern California radio station AM 830 KLAA’s SoCal Restaurant Showon March 28 and on local FOX station KTLA-5’s Morning News on March 26.

Ronald Frederick, author of Loving Like You Mean It: Use the Power of Emotional Mindfulness to Transform Your Relationships (Central Recovery Press), was interviewed on local FOX station KTLA-5’s Morning Show on March 30.

T Fleischmann, author of Time Is the Thing a Body Moves Through (Coffee House Press), was interviewed on Literary Hub’s podcast on March 7.

Bangor, Maine’s Metro Magazine published an interview with Tracey Hecht, author of the Nocturnals series (Fabled Films Press), in its April 2019 issue.

Chico News & Review published an article about Brontez Purnell, author of Since I Laid My Burden Down (The Feminist Press at CUNY/Amethyst Editions) and The Nightlife of Jacuzzi Gaskett (illus. Elise R. Peterson; Dottir Press) on March 28.

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