Critical Mass

Patti Smith, Ann Patchett and more book reviews and news

By Carolyn Kellogg

Patti Smith performing in Finland, 2007

Claude Peck reviewed Patti Smith's Year of the Monkey for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Priscilla Gilman reviewed Ann Patchett's The Dutch House for the Boston Globe.

Heller McAlpin reviewed Patchett’s The Dutch House and Leslie Jamison’s Make It Scream, Make It Burn for NPR, and Emma Donoghue’s Akin for The Barnes and Noble Review.

NBCC Emerging Critic Rochelle Spencer talked to a number of writers, including Alexander Chee, about the tarot for Lithub and also reviewed Ebony Elizabeth Thomas's The Dark Fantastic for the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Michael Adam Carroll reviewed two books for Ploughshares — Ta-Nehisi Coates' The Water Dancer and The Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa — and The Atlas of Reds and Blues by Devi S. Laskar for The Believer.

NBCC board member Lori Feathers recommends works in translation at Words without Borders.

Zach Graham recommended books on BBC Radio 4.

Peggy Kurkowski reviewed Agrippina: The Most Extraordinary Woman of the Roman World by Emma Southon for Open Letters Review.

Hamilton Cain reviewed two books for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune: Eric Foner's The Sound Founding and Petina Gappah's Out of Darkness, Shining Light.

Jean Huets reviewed Inland by Téa Obreht at Ron Slate’s On the Seawall.

Lisa Peet talked to Dina Nayeri about her book The Ungrateful Refugee at Bloom.

Jennifer Solheim interviewed Amanda Goldblatt about her debut novel Hard Mouth for The Fiction Writers Review.

Kirsche Romo reviewed the essay collection Burn It Down for the Washington Independent Review of Books; Mother Knows Best by Kira Peikoff for The Big Thrill; and two books for BookTrib, The Tower of Songs by Casey Barrett and The Ventriloquists by E. R. Ramzipoor.

Former NBCC Emerging Critic Letitia Montgomery-Rodgers reviewed five books for Foreward Reviews: Jung Young Moon’s Seven Samurai Swept Away in a River, Hebe Uhart’s The Scent of Buenos Aires, Maya Ombasic’s Mostarghia, Ronit Matalon’s And the Bride Closed the Door and Margarita Khemlin’s Klotsvog.

David R. Altman reviewed the Robin Williams biography Robin by David Itzkoff for the Pickens County Progress.

Pam Munter reviewed George Takei's graphic memoir for all ages They Called Us Enemy for Fouth & Sycamore.


NBCC member Kimberly King Parsons' short story colletion Black Light was longlisted for the National Book Award for fiction.

Meg Waite Clayton's novel The Last Train to London was published Sept. 10 by HarperCollins.

Clea Simon’s 2017 “World Enough” (Severn House, 2017) was named one of 10 fiction “must reads” by the Massachusetts Center for the Book at their 18th annual book awards.

Jane Ciabattari's short story “Acqua Alta” was published in Big Other.  

Jean Huets' poetic riff on Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass was published in North American Review

Photo: Patti Smith performing at Provinssirock festival, Seinäjoki, Finland in 2007.

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