Critical Notes

Reviews and More From NBCC Members

By Chelsea Leu

a bookshelf with a picture of a typewriter

Greetings, NBCC Members and Friends,

We hope you’re busy enjoying the last weeks of summer and, of course, enjoying a few good reads as well. Here’s what our members have been up to lately . . .

Member Reviews/Essays

NBCC board member Colette Bancroft reviewed The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell for the Tampa Bay Times.

NBCC board member May-lee Chai wrote about the novels of Julie Otsuka—When the Emperor was Divine; The Buddha in the Attic; and, most recently, The Swimmers—for Alta Online.

Former NBCC board member Mark Athitakis wrote about The Old Farmer’s Almanac and its drift away from its original purpose for The Washington Post.

Tara Cheesman reviewed Javier Cercas’s Even the Darkest Night, translated from the Spanish by Anne McClean, for the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Jenny Shank reviewed Perish by LaToya Watkins for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Kate Knibbs wrote about the twentieth anniversary of M.T. Anderson’s Feed for Wired.

Jay Gabler reviewed Frances Kai-Hwa Wang’s You Cannot Resist Me When My Hair Is In Braids for The Tangential.

Joan Silverman reviewed Breaking Bread: Essays from New England on Food, Hunger, and Family, edited by Deborah Joy Corey and Debra Spark, for the Portland Press Herald (ME).

Dan Kubis reviewed NBCC board member May-lee Chai’s Tomorrow in Shanghai & Other Stories for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Oline H. Cogdill reviewed You’re Invited by Amanda Jayatissa and Girls Without Tears by T.L. Finlay for the South Florida Sun Sentinel. For Shelf Awareness, she reviewed The Blame Game by Sandie Jones.

Tobias Carroll reviewed Annie Coggan’s The Book of Error and Jeffrey Lewis’s Land of Cockaigne, both for the Portland Press Herald. At, he reviewed The Devil Takes You Home by Gabino Iglesias.

Kevin Blankinship reviewed the film Three Thousand Years of Longing, an Arabian Nights-inspired fantasy directed by George Miller and starring Tilda Swinton and Idris Elba, for New Lines Magazine.

Diane Scharper reviewed The Transcendentalists and Their World by Robert A. Gross for The Hopkins Review.

Allan Graubard reviewed In the Blink of a Third Eye by Valery Oisteanu for The American Book Review.

Linda Hitchcock reviewed the delightful Gothic-style mystery A Dreadful Splendor by B.R. Myers for Book Trib.

Paul Wilner wrote about a Jack Kerouac centennial birthday celebration held at the Henry Miller Memorial Library in Big Sur, CA, for the Monterey County Weekly.

Claude Peck reviewed Diary of a Misfit by Casey Parks for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Nell Beram reviewed Lauren Acampora’s The Hundred Waters; Jerome Charyn’s Big Red: A Novel Starring Rita Hayworth and Orson Welles; and William Deresiewicz’s The End of Solitude: Selected Essays on Culture and Society, all for Shelf Awareness.

Member Interviews

Former NBCC President Kate Tuttle, books editor at The Boston Globe, was interviewed by Poets & Writers.

For their “Across the Pond,” podcast, NBCC board member Lori Feathers and her co-host, Sam Jordison, talked to Sonia Overall about her new novel, Eden, which explores Hemingway’s life, loves, and the creative inspiration for his unfinished novel, The Garden of Eden.

Former NBCC Vice President Karen R. Long hosted the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards podcast, which just wrapped season two. It begins with poet Tracy K. Smith and ends with memoirist and novelist Mary Morris.

In the fall issue of Mystery Scene, Oline H. Cogdill interviewed author Linda Castillo. She also named her annual list of “Six Writers to Watch.”

W. Scott Olsen interviewed art photographer Fran Forman for the Frames Magazine podcast.

Member News

Tobias Carroll’s novel Ex-Members was published by Astrophil Press.

Rebecca Foust’s new book, Only, to be released from Four Way Books on September 15, 2022, recently received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly. In addition, Foust’s poem “At Motel 6 the Night DeeDee Died,” was featured on Verse Daily. (It appears in the current issue of The Cincinnati Review with another poem, “Almost”). Foust also has two poems, “Missing Flight 11 on 9/11” and “To the Sonnet,” in the most recent issue of Quarterly West.

Kassie Rose recommended The Colony by Audrey Magee; The Trees by Percival Everett; Self-Portrait by Celia Paul, and Mr. Wilder & Me by Jonathan Coe on “All Sides Weekend: Books,” a live talk show broadcasting throughout central Ohio on NPR member station WOSU 89.7 FM.

“Backroom” photo by NBCC member Jennie Hann. Used with permission.

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