This Week’s Reviews

The Walrus and the Caribou
Maika Harper, illus. Marcus Cutler | Inhabit Media | 9781772272567 | April 2020
“The illustrations provided by Marcus Cutler show a wide range of emotions in Guk, the walrus, and the caribou… I think this leads the story to be read aloud with a great deal of emotion and animation which I believe is the original intent of Inuit storytelling.”—Youth Services Book Review

Un Poco Perdido
Chris Haughton | NubeOcho | 9788417673130 | October 2019

Un Poco Perdido will be a hit and one that kids will return to again and again.”—Kids’ BookBuzz

Taxi: Stories from the Back Seat
Aimée de Jongh | Conundrum Press | 9781772620399 | September 2019
“This is a simple, somewhat indirect and brilliant memoir. De Jongh’s art is, as always, stunning.”—Library Comic

Cesare
Jerome Charyn | Bellevue Literary Press | 9781942658504 | January 2020
“Often shocking and occasionally confounding, this darkly resonant novel is a dystopian rendering of World War II Germany on the cusp of its slow slide into defeat.”—Comics Grinder

Tender Points
Amy Berkowitz | Nightboat Books | 9781643620282 | October 2019
“[Berkowitz] demonstrates incisive wit and a tight control of language. Culturally wide-ranging, she draws on Freud, fiction writer Richard Brautigan, Sarah Winchester, the Riot Grrl punk-music movement, and Sex and The City, to texture and color [her work].”—Intima: A Journal of Narrative Medicine

Possess the Air: Love, Heroism, and the Battle for the Soul of Mussolini’s Rome
Taras Grescoe | Biblioasis | 9781771963237 | March 2020
“Artful and detailed. . . . Set in Mussolini’s Rome, which lives and breathes thanks to Grescoe’s storytelling. . . . Alarming parallels emerge to the contemporary rise of populism, autocracy, and racial and religious intolerance. In this regard, Possess the Air is, just like de Bosis’s leaflets were as they drifted down on the streets of Rome, an inspirational message for all of those who love democracy.”—Foreword Reviews

The Spinster Diaries
Gina Fattore | Prospect Park Books | 9781945551734 | April 2020
“Paying homage to women who self-actualize through their art, The Spinster Diaries focuses on two women separated by time who live out their beliefs. . . . Gina’s story develops in tandem with Fanny’s. Both adopt The Spinster Way, prioritizing writing over the typical feminine protocol of marriage and children. Their relationships with their sisters highlight the importance of women’s friendships, while their resilience and humor are dominant and infectious. Fanny inspires Gina to maintain hope in the face of death, even as she herself outlives everyone she loves. The ending is unexpected and delightful.” Foreword Reviews

The Unseen
Roy Jacobsen, trans. Don Shaw and Don Bartlett | Biblioasis | 9781771963190 | April 2020
“A pearlescent tribute to the alchemy of the sea. . . . The Unseen works toward an end that’s as much a beginning—a tight-woven net cast into the unknown.”—Foreword Reviews

Beautiful Aliens
Steve Abbott, edit. Jamie Townsend | Nightboat Books | 9781643620152 | December 2019
“Upon opening Beautiful Aliens, it becomes quickly apparent that Abbott’s most abundant talent was in making connections. Abbott edited his own little mag (the influential and vaunted Soup), wrote reviews for Poetry Flash and a variety of gay newspapers, and continued to labor over his own creative pieces, all while having an active love life and raising a daughter as a solo parent during a period when such domestic arrangements were virtually unheard of. It is a testament to his rare talent, then, that so much of his writing is of such a high caliber.”—Full Stop
“Abbott’s work through this collection, much of it widely available for the first time, has a wonderful and wild energy to it, moving in multiple directions simultaneously, and jumping from project to project. The book itself is a curious collage of styles and experiments, as Abbott’s literary shifts echoed very clearly the shifts in his own interests and concerns, all with an urgency that moves back and forth from wildly energized to desperate.”—rob mclennan’s blog

Above Us the Milky WayFowzia Karmi | Deep Vellum Publishing | 9781646050024 | April 2020
“A legend, the text walks the borderlands of what exists for Karimi, what might have existed, and what exists within us all as we project its pages into the strange afterlife of imagination.”—Foreword Reviews

Girls Lost
Jessica Schiefauer, trans. Saskia Vogel | Deep Vellum Publishing | 9781941920954 | March 2020

Girls Lost is captivating as its three leads explore the universal challenges of teenage angst, conflicts between perception and reality, and the power of another’s gaze to free or entrap you.”—Foreword Reviews

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