Critical Notes

Reviews and More From NBCC Members

By Michael Schaub

Members and friends, we hope you’ve been doing well, and have had a great February so far! Our members have been keeping busy with reviews of books by authors including Amanda Churchill, Jay Neugeboren, Dennis Yi Tenen, David Finkel, and Isabel Waidner, and interviews with writers like Ingrid Rojas Contreras, Roxana Robinson, and Venita Blackburn. Stay warm and safe, and as always, thanks for reading!

Member Reviews/Essays

Carl Hoffman reviewed John O’Connor’s The Secret History of Bigfoot: Field Notes on a North American Monster for The Washington Post.

Kristen Martin wrote about Kelley Fong’s Investigating Families and the realities of precarious motherhood by way of Jessamine Chan’s The School for Good Mothers for The New York Review of Books.

NBCC lifetime member Greg Sarris’ book and film review “What’s Missing in Killers of the Flower Moon?” was published in ZYZZYVA.

Joyce Saenz Harris reviewed Amanda Churchill’s debut novel, The Turtle House, for The Dallas Morning News.

NBCC lifetime member Fran Hawthorne reviewed After Camus by Jay Neugeboren for the New York Journal of Books.

Jenny Shank reviewed Remedies for Sorrow: An Extraordinary Child, a Secret Kept from Pregnant Women, and a Mother’s Pursuit of the Truth by Megan Nix for America.

Gabriel Nichols reviewed Dennis Yi Tenen’s Literary Theory for Robotsfor The Washington Post.

NBCC Vice President/Secretary Colette Bancroft reviewed David Finkel’s An American Dreamer for the Tampa Bay Times.

Former NBCC board member Mary Ann Gwinn reviewed Cahokia Jazz, the new novel by Francis Spufford, for the Los Angeles Times.

Ryan Chapman wrote a long piece on the six novels on the 2023 Booker Prize shortlist for The Sewanee Review‘s winter issue.

Adam M. Lowenstein reviewed Benjamin C. Waterhouse’s One Day I’ll Work for Myself and Edward Williams’ Taming the Octopusfor The American Prospect.

In The Brooklyn Rail, John Domini reviewed Isabel Waidner’s Corey Fah Does Social Mobility, while also praising their previous novel, Sterling Karat Gold.

Betsy Groban wrote about reading to her grandchildren for Publishers Weekly.

Nell Beram reviewed two books for Shelf Awareness: Hits, Flops, and Other Illusions: My Fortysomething Years in Hollywood by Ed Zwick and What Have We Here?: Portraits of a Life by Billy Dee Williams.

Heller McAlpin’s NPR roundup of fiction featuring older heroines includes short reviews of Roxane Robinson’s Leaving, Olivia Ford’s Mrs. Quinn’s Rise to Fame, Lisa Gornick’s Ana Turns, Alice Elliott Dark’s Fellowship Point, and Lore Segal’s Ladies’ Lunch.

Dean Rader reviewed the exhibit Drawing the Line: Michaelangelo to Asawa for ArtForum.

Linda Hitchcock reviewed My Favorite Scar, written by Nicolas Ferraro and translated by Mallory Craig-Kuhn, for BookTrib.

Jake Casella Brookins reviewed Scott Guild’s Plastic for the Chicago Review of Books.

Randy Cepuch reviewed 42 Reasons to Hate the Universe (And One Reason Not To) by Chris Ferrie, Wade David Fairclough, and Byrne Laginestra for the Washington Independent Review of Books.

Laurie Stone reviewed Love Me Tender by Constance Debre for Oldster.

NBCC board member Lauren LeBlanc reviewed Lucy Sante’s I Heard Her Call My Namefor The Boston Globe.

Chris Barsanti reviewed Michiko Kakutani’s The Great Wave: The Era of Radical Disruption and the Rise of the Outsider for the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Aiden Hunt reviewed Amanda Newell’s poetry chapbook, I Will Pass Even to Acheron, for my publication for the Philly Poetry Chapbook Review.

For The Red Hook Star-Revue, Michael Quinn reviewed The Premonition, written by Banana Yoshimoto and translated by Asa Yoneda.

Paul Wilner reviewed Material Wealth: Mining the Personal Archive of Allen Ginsberg, compiled and edited by Pat Thomas, for ZYZZYVA.

NBCC Vice President/Emerging Critics Fellowship and Online Michael Schaub reviewed Mariah Stovall’s I Love You So Much It’s Killing Us Bothfor NPR.

Member Interviews

Grant Faulkner interviewed Ingrid Rojas Contreras about her new memoir, The Man Who Could Move Clouds, on the Write-minded podcast.

For Literary Hub, NBCC Vice President/Events Jane Ciabattari spoke with Roxana Robinson about her new novel, Leaving, which explores intimacy and romance in later years: “I began noticing that romance, a real emotional engagement, in the second half of your life, was something complex and interesting—and completely different from romance in your twenties.”

Tiffany Troy interviewed Jill Mceldowney about her collection, Otherlight, for JMWW, and Rebecca Kosick, translator of Secret Poetics by Hélio Oiticica, for The Los Angeles Review.

Jenny Shank interviewed Laura Pritchett about her new novel, Playing with Wildfire, for High Country News.

NBCC Vice President/Emerging Critics Fellowship and Online Michael Schaub interviewed Venita Blackburn (Dead in Long Beach, California) and Claire Oshetsky (Poor Deer) for the Orange County Register.

“Bookstore” by Edward Jung is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.