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Blog posts tagged with "book review"

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Which Way Next?

Which Way Next? By David MacWilliams   |  February 1, 2015
In his brief essay, “Dead Weight,” Eric Freeze describes a walk he takes with his dog, Zeke, a walk that ends horribly. He sees a police cruiser descending a hill, his Dalmatian blundering into its path, and there’s nothing he can do but shout and witness the inevitable. This scene reveals a tension that runs through many of the fifteen essays in his first collection of essays, Hemingway on a Bike: the threat of lurking disaster in the most peaceful of moments versus the potential in such moments for sudden and wonderful insight.

A Beautiful Savage Game

A Beautiful Savage Game By Amber D. Stoner   |  January 7, 2015
After forty years of watching the game, playing fantasy football, and mourning yet another Oakland Raiders’ loss, Almond no longer indulges his love of watching football and his latest book, Against Football: One Fan’s Reluctant Manifesto, explains why.

The Infinitely Unending Art of Judith Kitchen

The Infinitely Unending Art of Judith Kitchen By Marilyn Bousquin   |  December 1, 2014
Judith Kitchen, writer, editor, critic, and teacher, died at the age of 73 on November 6, 2014, after living with metastasized breast cancer, the subject of The Circus Train. I choose the word “living” deliberately because Kitchen’s presence—her aliveness on the page—is a swirling force behind many memorable passages in the book...

Raise High the Roof Beam, Women Authors

Raise High the Roof Beam, Women Authors By Josette Kubaszyk   |  November 3, 2014
Since its inception, Shebooks’ digital collection of downloadable fiction, memoir, and journalism has grown to over 70 books, each of which the publishers say can be read “in an hour or two.” Their library is composed of works by both new and established writers. We review three selections in this month's book review.

To the Body Born

To the Body Born By Jan Shoemaker   |  October 1, 2014
“I started my martial arts training on the day the Gulf War began,” Peggy Shinner recalls. It was a discipline she would go on to master and teach. Moving across the page in her essay collection, You Feel So Mortal, with the same agility she took to the polished wood of the dojo floor, Shinner explores the flesh and blood experience—hers and ours—of having a body.

The Nothing That Is Not There and the Nothing That Is

The Nothing That Is Not There and the Nothing That Is By Doug Rutledge   |  September 3, 2014
In Praise of Nothing is both an interesting and a frustrating book. It’s interesting in its attempt to write a postmodern memoir. It’s frustrating, however, because it does not fulfill the reader’s conventional expectations of coherence and meaning. Postmodern thinkers, such as Roland Barthes, are highly skeptical of the idea of human agency and would also doubt the coherence of the self. They believe the idea that a human being who is a psychologically whole and stable person is largely fictionalized. Therefore, LeMay has written an unstable memoir.

Essaying a Spinning World

Essaying a Spinning World By Robert Root   |  August 1, 2014
Much of what Skloot deems "off-kilter" seems the kind of emotional imbalance with which we can all identify.

The Inner World of Caregiving

The Inner World of Caregiving By Jennifer Ochstein   |  July 1, 2014
If caregiving was a compass and sainthood was at zero degrees north, The Fifth Season would orient us due south.

Growing the Soil and the Soul: On Richard Gilbert's SHEPHERD

Growing the Soil and the Soul: On Richard Gilbert's SHEPHERD By Thomas Larson   |  June 1, 2014
Sometimes a memoir, spilling into the ken of autobiography, must grapple with an author’s lifelong enigma—his book’s story, the story. As we read, we feel this cyclonic summing-up, the best chance after the life (or as far as the life has got) to say what, in particular, shaped that life’s core meaning. Perhaps the revelation is that we don’t get another go-round (obvious but important), that we never knew the storm was gathering while it happened (as much good as bad), and that the life we thought we lived was not exactly the one we did live (the new self the memoir discloses to its surprised narrator). Such is the case with Richard Gilbert’s book, Shepherd.

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