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BOOK REVIEW: Thrown Thumbnail

BOOK REVIEW: Thrown

While her academic peers chatted on the other side of the building, Howley took a seat on a bench in a different conference room and bore witness to her first cage fights. Before her, on an octagonal platform lit by a lofted spotlight and enclosed by a six-foot-tall chain link fence, two men “tore at one another with kicks and strikes, knees and elbows,” crumpling cartilage and cracking bones. Howley found herself genuinely mesmerized—instead of looking away or covering her eyes, she leaned in.
Department: Reviews
BOOK REVIEW: Love Me Back by Merritt Tierce Thumbnail

BOOK REVIEW: Love Me Back by Merritt Tierce

We talk often about fearless writers. We use words like "brave" and "unflinching on book jackets and in glowing blurbs when the protagonists within enact dangerous behavior without moral-of-the-story appeals and sensationalized flourishes.
Department: Reviews
BOOK REVIEW: Against Football Thumbnail

BOOK REVIEW: Against Football

Steve Almond’s new book, Against Football, asks essentially the same question. How is it that a game which “in its exalted moments, is not just a sport, but a lovely and intricate form of art” also legitimizes, as he says, “a tolerance for violence, greed, racism, and homophobia”?
Department: Reviews
BOOK REVIEW: Lost Things Thumbnail

BOOK REVIEW: Lost Things

Everyone knows something about the power of things, how they remind us of our actions over time, how they have the power to delight or disappoint us. I’m referring here to what Katy Simpson Smith calls “oddments”—the items we don’t mean to collect, that we can’t quite bring ourselves to throw away, that we put on a desk in a spare room and forget.
Department: Reviews
INTERVIEW: Filling in the gaps of history Thumbnail

INTERVIEW: Filling in the gaps of history

Tess Taylor’s debut book of poetry, The Forage House, is a lyric wonder rich with the complications of an Old South genealogy. Though she was born in California, Taylor is related to rural Appalachians, New England missionaries, and a powerful and political slave-holding family from Virginia: the Jeffersons (yes, those Jeffersons). In The Forage House, we find Taylor haunted by her family’s past, navigating between legend and truth, marked and unmarked graves, trying to make sense of a deep-rooted history.
Department: Interviews
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