Monthly Archives: July, 2015

Pocket Review: Talk by Linda Rosenkrantz

Talk Linda Rosenkrantz New York Review Books, 2015 Summer reading lists, the midyear staples of literary sites, blogs, and review pages, are necessarily the stuff of fantasy: what we will pack to read on the beach in between dips in the azure ocean, what we will take on that plane trip to exotic lands or […]


A Novelist in the Poet’s Village: On Elizabeth Bishop by Colm Toíbín

On Elizabeth Bishop Colm Toíbín Princeton University Press, 2015 1. The critic David Kalstone said about Elizabeth Bishop in 1977 that “she is probably the most honored yet most elusive of contemporary poets.” How does one capture such an elusive prize? This is the challenge faced by Colm Toíbín. Bishop upped the ante as well […]


Pocket Review: The Sunken Cathedral by Kate Walbert

The Sunken Cathedral Kate Walbert Scribner, 2015 Here is an interesting, almost Oulipean, challenge: How does one write a modern, urban novel without referencing technology? Maybe modern is the wrong word, with its connotations of sleekness and smooth surfaces. How does one write a contemporary novel, then, set in—say—New York City, without mentioning cell phones, […]


Dreaming of a Cold and Rainy Fourth

Confession time: I’m hoping it rains tomorrow. I know, I know—that’s a terrible thing to say. People have beach plans and grilling plans and fireworks-viewing plans. Me, I have a very beloved ten-year-old dog who is absolutely terrified of anything percussive, and I live in a neighborhood of obnoxious dumbass teenagers who like to blow […]