Interview with Tiffany McDaniel

The author of The Summer that Melted Everything talks about her latest novel and its inspiration, her characters, on writing sad stories, favourite quote from the book and why, the nature of the devil, her publishing journey, and more.

A review of Year of the Wasp by Joel Deane

Though the narrative presents a fast-paced story of ambulance, medication, confusion and return, we’re in the realm of poetry, which can be dream-like, with a multitude of simultaneous meanings. The poems operate on several levels at once, from the struggles of a failed body and its attempts to come back from the nightmare of “motor neurone degradation, to the writer’s daily struggle to make sense of language and the self against an increasingly incomprehensible world.

A review of Beulah’s House of Prayer by Cynthia A Graham

I would categorize this book as historical fiction first and foremost, though it is touted as magical realism. I had this in the back of my mind as I read, but other than Beulah’s mysterious arrival in town and her omnipresence for most of the rest of the book, the “magical realism” elements weren’t obvious—until the end. This is where Graham’s gift of storytelling shines through

Interview with Dane Cobain

The author of No Rest for the Wicked. drops by to talk about his work, his editing process, where he gets his ideas, his secret novel, his writing routine, his favourite books, best writing advice, promotion tips, and lots more.

Singer-songwriter Caroline Rose and the band Algiers, Jeff Buckley, PJ Harvey, and Music Culture

Caroline Rose is one of the performers who is keeping the singer-songwriter tradition alive, one of the performers who is keeping the independence music scene a resource for liberation: so are Alabama Shakes, Arctic Monkeys, Bright Eyes, Broken Bells, Camera Obscura, The Dears, Father John Misty, Foster the People, Rhiannon Giddens, Valerie June, Frank Ocean, Josh Ritter, Savages, St. Vincent, and Vampire Weekend.

A review of Museum of Unheard (of) Things

These stories, which function to cast a dim aura to the otherwise miserable objects, are “Unerhörten” in the two sense of that German word: they are “unheard” and “unheard of”—unknown and outrageous, suppressed and surprising. But for the non-German speakers, this adjective carried a third meaning: it was impossible to hear them, because all the stories could only be read in German. Until now, that is. The 78 stories in the entire collection have been translated into English by You Nakai and Alexander Booth, assembled together following the order of their weight, and published as the official catalogue raisonné of the museum.

A review of The Improbable Wonders of Moojie Littleman by Robin Gregory

Obviously Robin Gregory is a well-read writer. Not only does she mimic Homer’s “wine dark sea” with the novel’s opening of “dories…and spider crabs flood[ing] the beach like a ghostly pink tide,” but also refers back to great YA series like A Series of Unfortunate Events through her grim imaginativeness. Gritty magical realism is in vogue, if we account for the non-YA St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised By Wolves by Karen Russell and Mr. Fox by Helen Oyeyemi beside which The Improbable Wonders holds its own.

A review of The Weekenders by Mary Kay Andrews

Andrews has two outstanding strengths as an author: character development and attention to detail. She takes readers right to this quiet, beautiful island and gives us a tour of its dwellings, many of which date back to the 1920’s and ‘30’s. Most of her protagonists are strong, funny, Southern women who accept their flaws and own the choices they’ve made, good or bad.

Dreams of Trouble and Transcendence: Brooke Waggoner’s Sweven

Brooke Waggoner’s compositions acknowledge the inevitability of time, and the struggle between mundane responsibility and transcendent possibility, with love to be found or lost.  On Sweven, the song “Widow Maker” seems to contain so much musical possibility—it seems both a strong statement and a kind of satire.  American Songwriter (November 13, 2015) magazine made much of Brooke Waggoner’s video for the song “Widow Maker,” highlighting its scientific theme and humor.