Reviews

Swallow the Fish – Gabrielle Civil

Civil upends our assumptions around artistic displays of the body, demands we consider the fact that performance art engages with unruly ghosts and wounded riddles.

Effi Briest – Theodor Fontane

When the doctor asked me if I had recently experienced a tragedy, I took the English translation out of my backpack, and read to her.

Our Dead World – Lilana Colanzi

Colanzi’s work moves in the opposite direction of Jung’s in every way; horror is a metaphysical humility.

Black Moses – Alain Mabanckou

The writing shows such a singular view of the world through an adolescent’s — then young man’s — then madman’s — eyes.

Everything Is Awful and You’re A Terrible Person – Daniel Zomparelli

To the extent that such exchanges are recognizable to the point where a chuckle turns into vague discomfort, Zomparelli’s collection paints a fairly accurate life of urban, or urban-adjacent, cis-gay men.

Orogeny – Irène Mathieu

OROGENY generates mountains; dynamite destroys them. The cycle is complete; the circle closes. Or perhaps not.

Angel Station – Jáchym Topol

ANGEL STATION is a seething novel of accumulation, fast, strange, and destructive.

The Kingdom of the Young – Edie Meidav

Although Meidav’s writing is lucid and subtly evocative, it really makes no effort to be “lyrical” or “rhapsodic.”

Double Teenage – Joni Murphy

The problem of girlhood cannot be adequately addressed within the form of literary realism.

The Plains – Gerald Murnane

In the absence of scene, ideas take over – invented bibliographies, doctrinal disputes, theories of time, schools of mapmaking – but always with a physical backdrop, an illuminated library row or looming landscape.