Category: Literary Fiction Reviews

A review of The Persecuted by Krishna Mohana Banerjea

Paromita Sengupta’s “Editorial Notes on the Text” as well as “Bibliography” help us understand the text better and stir our desire to know the life and times of the protagonist, Bany Lall, and like-minded youths thoroughly. It is a must read for every Bengalee, nay Indian, who would love to trace the history of the times, seemingly past and lost in the abyss of time.

A review of All the Lives We’ve Lived by Roslyn McFarland

Kate’s trajectory is one of discomfort and discovery as she unearths, and then rewrites her history and the history of Salt Pan Creek, facing the wrongs she and her people, including her own parents, have done, and attempting to right them. McFarland does a beautiful job of pulling history, fiction, multiple love stories and trauma together into a coherent narrative that is powerful.

A review of The Weekend by Charlotte Wood

The Weekend is about so many things: preconceptions, societal norms, continuity and difference, about the self and about relationships, but most particularly about friendship and what it means to be both separate individuals in this world throughout life changes, and also the ways in which we are implicitly connected and collective.

A review of The Girl in the Mirror by Jenny Blackford

Blackford’s prose is silky smooth and the book reads quickly, driven by its fantasy narrative and the way in which historical detail is covered. Though the story has paranormal overtones, shifting as it does between the two timeframes, and the shapeshifting villain and ghosts that move between the worlds, The Girl in the Mirror is relevant to a 21st century reader.

A review of Everything Inside by Edwidge Danticat

Loss and grief are rooted in a large part of the Haitian diaspora identity and manifests both overtly and covertly throughout these stories. Danticat is meticulous in her writing about Haiti and its people’s complex relationship with the U.S. In each character’s search for a better life, she magnifies the usually unexplored grief that comes with years of generational trauma and migration.

A review of City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert

The book is fast paced, consistently engaging, and is often very funny. It comes across as light and easy, but amidst the intriguing mix of Vivian’s self-deprecation and self-aggrandisement there are serious themes in the book. The key one is the relationship between female desire and male aggression. The book subtly but powerful explores the way in which women are both diminished by the men around them and the ways in which they retain and reclaim power.

An interview with Marc Graham

The author of Son of the Sea, Daughter of the Sun and Runes for Writers talks about his new books, his research, the system used, on the transition from fiction to nonfiction, advice for new writers, and more.

Interview with Tantra Bensko

The author of Floating on Secrets talks about her new book, about growing up in Indiana, her inspirations and influences, the book she’s reading now, her new work in progress, advice on writing, and lots more.

A review of Halcyon Days by Susan Taylor Meehan

Meehan includes details that capture the atmosphere of Depression-era Saskatchewan: homemakers’ clubs and farm organizations; bank foreclosures and farm auctions; indebtedness to the general store; relief shipments from Eastern Canada, and lack of books in the schools.