News & New Work
News & Reviews
The Tribune calls Wang “a visionary,” writing that her novel about a burned-out Ph.D. candidate pondering her Chinese heritage and an upcoming marriage “has crafted a narrative that manages to be both restrained and explosive.”
The magazine writes that Koestenbaum’s latest collection “mixing conscious states like color” and declares that, “for Koestenbaum, art is no therapy or escape. It simply tags along, delivering beauty un-deliberated.”
The LA Review of Books writes that Pico’s latest is full of “poems that are complex yet accessible, that sound like 2018 but that have staying power long past it,” comparing the poet to Frank O’Hara.
Jonathan Farmer discusses how the latest book differs from McCrae’s previous work, meditates on his relationship to the book as a white reader, and praises the “power” of McCrae’s poems.
In The Nation, writer J. Robert Lennon pens a moving tribute to Johnson’s life and his final collection, The Largesse of the Sea Maiden. "It wasn’t that his books failed to conform to expectations,” Lennon writes. “It was that his talent was too slippery to set them in the first place."
"It’s as though racism has always been the action and dealing with it the reaction," Pinckney reflects in his New York Review of Books piece on Ta-Nehisi Coates, Cornell West, and afro-pessimism.
The Guardian calls Klam “a deft hand at juxtaposition” and praises his ability to “evoke a sense of absurdity, but without resort to exaggeration.”
In a new poem for Poetry magazine, Corral’s narrator articulates an impending death, and laments “An animal/ is prowling/ this station. It shimmies with hunger./ It shimmers/ with thirst./ To keep it away,/ I hurl my memories at it.”
Chee talks about how writing characters for fiction and nonfiction differs, and what inspires him to write about difficult aspects of his life.
Mask calls Pico’s newest book-length poem – about topics ranging from Janet Jackson to right-wing politicians – “his most formally and thematically impressive work yet.”
William T. Vollman doesn't own a cellphone, once submitted a 3,800-page long manuscript, and sleeps with Sacramento's homeless community under the stars. Sactown Magazine profiles the writer and calls his new work about climate change "a discursive masterpiece.”
The Poet Laureate, recently elected to a second term, discusses bringing poetry to “rural areas where most writers are unlikely to visit” and how poetry can provoke honest conversation.
Houstonia magazine interviews William T. Vollman
Vollman talks about drones, drinking with pro-nuclear power plant engineers, and what gives him hope for the future.
A new poem by Brown explores a father-son bond through both men’s relationship to a daughter: “We stand together on our block, me and my son,/ Neighbors saying our face is the same, but I know/ He’s better than me.”
"There is a sense in this volume that our better angels will need to become rowdier. They will need to know how to handle themselves in a brawl," writes Dwight Garner. He goes on to call the collection "scorching."
The Whiting Foundation regrets the passing of exceptional writer Joan Chase, Whiting 1987, "an archaeologist of our recent past and present, reading our traces back to us, showing us to ourselves freshly discovered and understood." (Russell Banks)
Calling Pico’s previous work “stellar,” Publishers Weekly says that his latest book “is a therapeutic process for poet and reader alike” and gives Junk a starred review.
Greenidge interviews fellow winner, Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, about forming the Dark Room Collective and why her “hope is to create spaces where people of all stripes can come together and speak at a lower decibel level.”
TIME talks to the poet, whose new collection Wade in the Water explores race and the Civil War, about visiting an Air Force base and what poetry has in common with prayer.
For Lambda Literary, Brown talks about why the power of poetry doesn’t need to be eternal, reflecting on a recent church experience to declare that “poetry is not interested in seeing itself last forever. It is a force that means to move us now.”
In the Times, fellow poet Craig Morgan Teicher remarks “few poets write like Li-Young Lee these days, facing the biggest and broadest questions head-on,” praising Lee’s “enormous sensuality.”
LaValle, author of the horror novel The Changeling, talks about how raising children inspires changeling mythology, and why "every life is impacted by politics."
Koestenbaum covers topics from the influence of both the Talmud and Susan Sontag on his work, to the beginning of his “life as a poet.”
The Review writes that Asymmetry “manages to deliver personal and global stories as if they were one,” dubbing the novel “one of 2018’s first near-perfect novels.”
Part diary, part collage, part textbook for a new School of Impulse, Camp Marmalade assembles a perverse and giddy cultural archive, a Ferris wheel of aphorisms, depicting a queer body amidst a dizzying flow of sensations, dreams, and distillations. "This book presents a hallucinatory glimmer of what that life might be without granting precedence to any single method," declares Bookforum.
In Junk, a narrator ponders illusions of security, sense of self, and indigenous identity. Pico explores the anxiety of utility, the loss of a boyfriend, plus Janet Jackson and Chili Cheese Fritos. "Junk," says writer Jenny Zhang, "is a true American odyssey."
In Wade in the Water, Tracy K. Smith ties America’s contemporary moment both to the nation’s fraught founding history and to a sense of the everlasting. Smith explores what it means to be a citizen, a mother, and an artist in a collection the New York Times calls "scorching."
Vollmann explores a topic that will define the generations to come: the factors and human actions that have led to global warming. Featuring Vollmann's signature encyclopedic research, No Immediate Danger, builds up a powerful, sobering picture of the ongoing nightmare of Fukushima. The Washington Post calls the book "a feverish, sprawling archive of who we are, and what we’ve wrought.”
How to Write an Autobiographical Novel is Chee’s manifesto on the entangling of life, literature, and politics, and how the lessons learned from a life spent reading and writing fiction have changed him. In these essays, he examines some of the most formative experiences of his life and the nation’s history. BuzzFeed's Isaac Fitzgerald says "Alexander Chee is one of the best living writers of today. If he’s not already a household name, he needs to be."
In what NPR calls a "penetrating meditation on loss," a woman unexpectedly loses her best friend, then finds herself burdened with the unwanted dog he has left behind. The woman refuses to be separated from the dog, and, determined to read its mind and fathom its heart, she comes dangerously close to unraveling - but also discovers the rich rewards of companionship.
Asymmetry explores inequities in age, power, and justice. Told in three unique sections, the novel tells the story of an aspiring novelist’s coming-of-age and an Iraqi-American detained by immigration officers. "Halliday is knowing," Time Magazine writes, "about isolation, dissatisfaction and the pain of being human."
Zebra, last in a line of autodidacts, leaves New York to retrace the journey she and her father made from Iran to the United States years ago. Books are her only companions—until she meets Ludo."Hearken ye fellow misfits, squint-eyed bibliophiles & book stall-stalkers," writes Wall Street Journal. "Here is a novel for you."
When Cantú joins the Border Patrol, he and his partners learn to haul in the dead and deliver to detention those they find alive. Plagued by nightmares, Cantú finds returning to civilian life impossible when an immigrant friend travels to Mexico and does not return. Esquire calls the memoir "a must-read."
Alarcón's story collection, longlisted for the 2017 National Book Award in Fiction, tells high-stakes tales of migration, betrayal, and uncertain futures. The Washington Post writes that the stories in The King Is Always Above the People "draw out humanity where it seems little hope is left."