Critical Notes

Reviews and More From NBCC Members

By Michael Schaub

The 2022 National Book Critics Circle Awards, New School Auditorium, New York, New York, March 23, 2023. Photograph by Beowulf Sheehan.

Friends, we hope you’re doing well! Stay tuned for some exciting announcements from the NBCC, including our new cohort of Emerging Critics Fellows. In the meantime, our members have been busy reviewing books by authors including Colson Whitehead, Ann Beattie, Lindsay Lynch, and Chuck D, and interviewing writers like Stephanie Bishop, Cristina García, and Martha Shelley. As always, thanks for reading!

Member Reviews/Essays

Edna Bonhomme wrote about abortion in literature for The Nation.

Joan Frank reviewed Lindsay Lynch’s Do Tell for The Washington Post.

For the Graphic Lit issue of Kirkus Reviews, former NBCC President Tom Beer wrote about falling for graphic novels.

Linda Hitchcock reviewed Carol Spencer’s Dressing Barbiefor BookTrib.

NBCC Vice President/Secretary Colette Bancroft reviewed Colson Whitehead’s Crook Manifestofor the Tampa Bay Times.

For The Red Hook Star-Revue, Michael Quinn reviewed Maud Martha by Gwendolyn Brooks.

Former NBCC board member Mary Ann Gwinn reviewed Into the Bright Sunshine: Young Hubert Humphrey and the Fight for Civil Rights by Samuel G. Freedman for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Eric Liebetrau wrote about Chuck D’s STEWdio: The Naphic Grovel Artrilogy of Chuck D and Summer of Hamn: Hollowpointlessness Aiding Mass Nihilismfor Kirkus Reviews.

Ron Slate reviewed Still Born, written by Guadalupe Nettel and translated by Rosalind Harvey, and Out of the Sugar Factory, written by Dorothee Elmiger and translated by Megan Ewing, for On The Seawall.

Cory Oldweiler reviewed Oksana Lutsyshyna’s Ivan and Phoebe, translated by Nina Murray, for Words Without Borders.

Lee Rossi reviewed Three Hundred Streets of Venice California by Tom Laichas for Cultural Daily.

Diane Scharper reviewed Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: Britain and the American Dream by Peter Moore for the Washington Examiner

Jim Schley reviewed Rage Hezekiah’s Yearn and Carol Potter’s What Happens Next Is Anyone’s Guess for Seven Days.

Christoph Irmscher reviewed Gunnar Broberg’s The Man Who Organized Nature: The Life of Linnaeus for The Wall Street Journal.

Bill Thompson reviewed Finn Murphy’s Rocky Mountain High: A Tale of Boom and Bust in the New Wild West for the Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier.

Tom Peebles reviewed Michael Walzer’s The Struggle for a Decent Politics: On “Liberal” as an Adjective, on his personal blog and on the American University of Paris’ Tocqueville 21 blog.

Carol Iaciofano Aucoin reviewed Ann Beattie’s short story collection Onlookers for WBUR’s Arts & Culture

Alexander Pyles reviewed I Meant It Once by Kate Doyle for Lit Reactor.

George de Stefano reviewed Paul Moses’ The Italian Squad for PopMatters.

Member Interviews

For their Across the Pond podcast, former NBCC board member Lori Feathers and podcast co-host Sam Jordison talked to Stephanie Bishop about her new literary thriller, The Anniversary.

NBCC Vice President/Events Jane Ciabattari had a conversation with Cristina García about chronicling Cuba’s complex fiction through fiction (and plays) for Literary Hub.

Anne Charles interviewed Martha Shelley, pioneering lesbian activist, member of the early Gay Liberation Front, and author of the memoir We Set the Night on Fire, on the show All Things LGBTQ.

Member News

NBCC member Shara Lessley guest edited “The Door Left Wide: Irish Poets in Tribute to Eavan Boland,” which features new work by 22 Irish writers and an afterword by scholar-biographer Jody Allen Randolph, for New England Review. Here’s Shara’s introductory essay on Eavan and the feature. Today, July 24, at 5:00 pm Eastern, Shara will be hosting a free celebratory event online highlighting the NER feature and Eavan’s legacy via Vermont Studio Center.