Reviews

I discovered Lorrie Moore in the University of Georgia infirmary in 1989—that is, I found her short story “You’re Ugly, Too” in the pages of the New Yorker I was reading in the waiting room. The story made me forget the sinus infection that brought me there, and made me laugh, as when one of […]

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From the Winter 2014 Issue

From the beginning, I knew there could be trouble: a box of cheeky new books on my doorstep, all dressed in their shiny covers, waiting to be read. All week I had been ranting about the contemporary world—its lack of tradition, its misuse of grammar, its insidious technologies. One television ad talked about the motel’s […]

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From the Winter 2014 Issue

Leslie Jamison puts her personal anguish on display in her debut book of essays, The Empathy Exams. She doesn’t shy away from the suffering of others, either. This focus on pain may be the collection’s most obvious feature, but it doesn’t strike me as its most important. As Jamison says of herself, the “desire to […]

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From the Fall 2014 Issue

This striking first collection explores love and loss through a series of linked poems that dramatizes the experiences of a young woman named Alice. The name of the heroine of Annotated Glass echoes the author’s name in a generative misspeaking that is one of the book’s dominant modes of pleasure and propulsion. For example, we […]

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From the Summer 2014 Issue

It’s 2014, the 100th anniversary of William Stafford’s birth, and people all over the country are celebrating his life and work. Why Stafford, I wonder, when I don’t remember so much interest in 100th anniversaries for Theodore Roethke, Elizabeth Bishop, John Berryman? In three years, will there be this resurgence of interest in Robert Lowell? […]

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From the Summer 2014 Issue

After reading recent books of poetry by Patricia Smith, Robert Wrigley, David Kirby, and Cathy Park Hong, one might be surprised to know that even the best of contemporary critics tend to devalue narrative poetry in favor of the lyric. After all, not only are these four books very good—they all employ narrative.  The bias […]

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From the Spring 2014 Issue

Sylvia Plath, arguably the greatest female poet of the twentieth century, has been the object of much biographical scrutiny, the more so because her suicide at age thirty seems inextricably bound up with her finest work and because, more generally, her life and writing have been the cause of much controversy. It seems likely that […]

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From the Summer 2013 Issue

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