Critical Notes

New Reviews and More from NBCC Members

By Jennie Hann

A cozy nook filled with books

We have tons of great reviews, interviews, features, and other literary news for you this week!!

Also: Stay tuned for next week, when we’ll announce our latest cohort of Emerging Critics.

In the meantime, as always, please stay safe, and thanks for reading and supporting the NBCC!!

Member Reviews/Essays

Carole V. Bell reviewed Love Marriage by Monica Ali for BookPage and Book Lovers by Emily Henry for NPR.

Former NBCC board member Mark Athitakis reviewed James Patterson’s memoir, James Patterson by James Patterson, for The Washington Post.

Wayne Catan reviewed Miss Chloe: A Memoir of Literary Friendship with Toni Morrison by A.J. Verdelle for the Los Angeles Review of Books.

For The Wall Street Journal, Heller McAlpin reviewed two new biographies about a group of woman philosophers at Oxford in the late 1930s: Metaphysical Animals by Clare Mac Cumhaill and Rachael Wiseman and The Women Are Up to Something by Benjamin J.B. Lipscomb.

AVENUE literary editor and former NBCC board member Celia McGee reviewed Geraldine Brooks’s new novel, Horse, in the May-June issue of the magazine.

Kitty Kelley reviewed Charles McGrath’s The Summer Friend: A Memoir for the Washington Independent Review of Books.

Kristin Martin reviewed the memoir Did Ye Hear Mammy Died? by Séamas O’Reilly for NPR.

Former NBCC board member Stephanie Burt wrote a “Diary” entry about tabletop roll-playing games (TTRPGs) for the London Review of Books.

Yvonne C. Garrett reviewed Holly Black’s Book of Night and A.G. Slatter’s The Path of Thorns for The Brooklyn Rail.

Judith Reveal reviewed The Favor by Nora Murphy for the New York Journal of Books.

Deborah Bacharach reviewed Susan Rich’s Gallery of Postcards and Maps: New and Selected Poems for Valparaiso Poetry Review.

Katherine Hill wrote about HBO’s adaptation of Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend for The Nation.

Theodore Kinni reviewed Split the Pie by Barry Nalebuff for strategy+business.

Jim Schley reviewed Kathryn Davis’s memoir, Aurelia, Aurélia, for Seven Days.

Michael Sims wrote a tribute to Rachel Carson, describing her influence on him and his son, for The New York Times.

Rhoda Feng reviewed Sally Hayden’s My Fourth Time, We Drowned: Seeking Refuge on the World’s Deadliest Migration Route for Foreign Policy.

Carol Iaciofano Aucoin reviewed Ru Freeman’s short story collection, Sleeping Alone, for WBUR’s Arts & Culture.

W. Scott Olsen reviewed Abandoned Moments: A Love Letter to Photography by Ed Kashi for Frames Magazine.

Jeff Alessandrelli reviewed Ray Johnson c/o, the artist’s retrospective at The Art Institute of Chicago, for Chicago Review, as well as Water Briefed, an exhibition by Emily Kepulis at Lolo Pass, for Variable West.

Member Interviews

NBCC board member Lori Feathers and her co-host Sam Jordison talked to Benjamin Myers about his new novel, The Perfect Golden Circle, for their “Across the Pond” podcast.

Paul Wilner interviewed Jennifer Egan about The Candy House for the Nob Hill Gazette.

Carole V. Bell interviewed Akwaeke Emezi about their latest novel (and first in the romance genre), You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty, for the June issue of BookPage.

Former NBCC board member Mark Athitakis interviewed Keith Gessen about his parenting memoir, Raising Raffi: The First Five Years, for the Los Angeles Times.

Anthony Domestico interviewed the poet Ange Mlinko for Commonweal.

Mary Mackey interviewed poet D. Nurske about his new collection, A Country of Strangers, for Synchronized Chaos.

Costa B. Pappas interviewed YA author Julia Lynn Rubin about her queer horror novel, Primal Animals, for Into.

Rhoda Feng interviewed Sara Ahmed about her new book, Complaint!, for The White Review.

W. Scott Olsen interviewed photographer Ryan West for the Frames Magazine podcast.

Member News

NBCC board member Joanna Scutts’s new book, Hotbed: Bohemian Greenwich Village and the Secret Club that Sparked Modern Feminism, has been published by Seal Press.

Robert Allen Papinchak has been named a Finalist for the 2022 Kukula Award for Excellence in Nonfiction Book Reviewing by The Washington Monthly. The judges described his essay on Ronald Brownstein’ s Rock Me on the Water, written for the Los Angeles Review of Books, as “rollicking and informative.”

Cynthia L. Haven has discussed her new book,Czesław Miłosz: A California Life, in a variety of contexts, with a variety of interlocutors. These include: Robert Pogue Harrison’s Entitled Opinions; the National Review (in conversation with John J. Miller); the Franke Institute for the Humanities at the University of Chicago; CITY LIGHTS LIVE! (in conversation with James Marcus); the Institute for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies at UC Berkeley; and “A Company of Authors” (Stanford Continuing Studies).

Jeff Alessandrelli’s braided-fictional-essay-experimental-novel And Yet was published by the small press[PANK] on June 7. Excerpts appear at Fence and the Cleveland Review of Books.

Partner News

Our friends and partners at Poets & Writers are hosting an online event on Wednesday, June 15, at 7:00 p.m. Eastern to celebrate Sonia Sanchez, winner of the 2022 Jackson Poetry Prize. The live virtual event will feature a reading by Sanchez, who will be joined by the poets who served as judges for this year’s award: Mary Jo Bang, Marilyn Chin, and Claudia Rankine. To sign up for a complimentary ticket, click here. The link will be included in your email receipt.

The Community of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP) will hold a virtual ceremony to announce the winners of their annual Firecracker Awards, which honor significant contributions to literary culture in the six categories, on Thursday, June 23, at 7:00 p.m. Eastern. To RSVP, click here. The event is free and automated closed captioning will be available.

“Morning Light” photo by NBCC member W. Scott Olsen. Used with permission.

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