Tagged: fiction

Why I hate books titled “The [Blank]’s Wife”

Why I hate books titled “The [Blank]’s Wife”

I have never read a single book with a title like The Time Traveler’s Wife or The Tiger’s Wife or The General’s Daughter, etc. (There’s a Goodreads list of all 65 books that use this awful, cliched convention.) Some of these are probably good. Maybe even feminist or subversive. But I can’t get past the...

Interview with Ranbir Singh Sidhu

Interview with Ranbir Singh Sidhu

In April, I reviewed Good Indian Girls by Ranbir Singh Sidhu, and mentioned specifically his exacting use of detail, purposeful use of violence, and sharp examination of the ways cultures intersect. Good Indian Girls garnered critical praise from Kirkus, Barnes & Noble, and a host of literary icons. Sidhu has won a Pushcart Prize and...

#FridayReads: Swamplandia! by Karen Russell (audio)

#FridayReads: Swamplandia! by Karen Russell (audio)

Karen Russell’s second book is tragically strange and lush with beautiful prose. It follows the Bigtree family, who own an alligator-themed park where all the alligators are named Seth. After the star alligator wrestler (and mother of the narrators) dies of cancer, Swamplandia! declines, eclipsed by a newer, slicker park called World of Darkness. The...

Amelia Gray's Museum of the Weird

#FridayReads: Amelia Gray’s Museum of the Weird

Amelia Gray’s Museum of the Weird begins with the unsettling tale “Babies” and builds layers of unsettling, odd, off-kilter, and slanted meaning from there. The stories work incredibly well on individual levels and together as a whole. “Babies” is about a woman who keeps having a baby—and then more than one baby—every night. The woman...

All of it’s true, and none of it happened

All of it’s true, and none of it happened

The book is perhaps the most challenging I’ve ever read, or ever will read, both from the perspective of writing craft and from the perspective of subject matter. The images and scenes are vivid and hard to face. They show carnage, destruction, cruelty and disfigurement, all of which are worse than death.

O’Brien’s writing is the same. He tears the craft apart, destroys the genre of fiction and leaves it bleeding and raw with its guts hanging out and its head cut off and posted on a stake at the entrance.