Author Archives: Lisa Peet

Shirt Pocket Reviews: Best of 2015

Spending between 10 and 15 hours on public transportation a week isn’t good for much, but it’s been excellent for my reading life. The downside, of course, has been a lack of free time to write about it. I can usually juggle a book or iPad on a train sardine-packed with my fellow commuters; less […]

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Pocket Review: Thirteen Ways of Looking by Colum McCann

Thirteen Ways of Looking Colum McCann HarperCollins, 2015 I can’t very well talk about my best books of the year until the year’s over, and I had one last book to finish up on the last day of 2015. So imagine my delight when I opened up Colum McCann’s Thirteen Ways of Looking this afternoon […]

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Jeanette Winterson on Not Cursing the Darkness

If you ask me, the first day of winter doesn’t fall on the Solstice. Rather, it comes on the first Monday after Daylight Saving time ends, when you look up from your desk at 5:00 and it’s dark out—that moment you realize that you’re not going to see much of the sun until March, except […]

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An Unhaunting

It’s easy enough to get in. There are no locks; you can enter as you like. Once you’re inside, though, there’s something unsettling. Everything looks to be in order, but you get an uneasy sense of abandonment. Someone used this place, once, on a regular basis—loved it, even. But now there’s a pervasive pall of […]

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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 […]

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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, […]

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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 […]

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The PEN Literary Awards: Picking The [Under] Dog

I fully intended on going to the PEN Literary Awards last night, I really did. I RSVP’d, for one thing, and anyone who knows me knows I’m compulsively polite on that count, because the PEN people certainly must have set aside those two plastic cups of Merlot and a couple of cheese cubes with my […]

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“The Most Mundane and Human Holiday”

My relationship to New Year’s Day has changed as I’ve gotten older. It’s funny; you’d think that as a younger person I would have been more concerned with looking ahead, at all the untapped energy of those blank calendar pages. But maybe because they were so abundant I could take them for granted, I was […]

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You Don’t Tug on Superman’s Cape

I don’t imagine everyone dreams exclusively of a full-time job doing whatever it is they love best. There are probably plenty of artists who want to make art on their own terms, in their own time, thank you very much, and are happy to work at something completely unrelated in order to pay the rent. […]

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