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Reviews

Thursday, April 16 2015

Why Are Critics Falling All Over Deepti Kapoor’s ‘A Bad Character’?

Too many reviews of this book universalise Idha’s experience and praise it for providing a window into the Indian woman’s experience. Which women would that be?


‘Times Beach’ Gives Us Theater, Free-form Jazz, Art Cinema, and Southern Gothic Literature

Times Beach is less a collection of poetry as it is an anthology of performance art presented under the guise of poetry.


Wednesday, April 15 2015

The Romance of Obsession in ‘Schubert’s Winter Journey’

Tenor Ian Bostridge has sung Winterreise hundreds of times and here gives it the equivalent of 33 1/3 entry -- only denser in substance, more elaborately written, and with some fascinating tangentials.


Coming Full Circle as the Children of Immigrants

The Blind Writer is less about South Asians and the Indian-American experience as it is about Indian-American men and their (in)abilities to navigate life.


Tuesday, April 14 2015

‘The Queen’s Bed’, the Queen’s Body, and the Body of the State

A rigorous, middle ground between lurid populist histories and dry academia, Anna Whitelock provides an excellent biography as a well trained historian.


The Heart Says Whatever in ‘Hausfrau’

Jill Alexander Essbaum’s first novel bleakly evokes the life of a woman adrift. However well built, it is story constructed over a sinkhole.


Monday, April 13 2015

‘Ravensbrück’: The Nonfiction of Nightmares

Sarah Helm’s Ravensbrück is a searingly comprehensive look at the sole concentration camp built to house women. It is the nonfiction of nightmares.


Thursday, April 9 2015

Perception vs. Reality in Tracy Manaster’s ‘You Could Be Home By Now’

Some books you just don’t want to end. Manaster’s debut is one of those books.


Wednesday, April 8 2015

Per Petterson’s Tales of Innocence and Experience

Petterson's closely-knit stories sadly and beautifully reveal the passage from boyish innocence to "manhood", and show us what it means to be a man.


Comedy Is a Lower Form in B.J. Novak’s ‘One More Thing’

B.J. Novak forsakes an impeccable sense of timing and an acerbic wit to patronize with this collection of cast-off skit ideas and sappy short-stories.


Tuesday, April 7 2015

‘Wayward Volume One: String Theory’ Beautifully Captures Accurate Folkloric Context

The comic series Wayward depicts the struggles of a group of supernatural teens growing up and fighting evil on the streets of modern Tokyo.


Monday, April 6 2015

Signs of Genius at the End of the World

Signs Preceding the End of the World is a moving novel about borders, identity and the world to come.


‘Culture Crash’ Aims to Draw Attention to the Dwindling Creative Subset of the Middle Class

Has the US abandoned its middle-class creatives? Scott Timberg explains in Culture Crash.


Thursday, April 2 2015

Cannabis Cowboys, Guitar-slinging Musicians, and Desert Landscapes

Homegrown captures the weirdness of Austin, as depicted in music poster art from the hippie days to the punk days.


The Grim, Strangely Hopeful World of Per Petterson

As existentially bleak as it is, I Refuse is not devoid of hope. A refusal is a negation, to be sure, but a lost swimmer may refuse to drown.


Wednesday, April 1 2015

Hamid’s Collection of Essays on Life, Art and Politics Sparkle With the Magic of His Prose

The essays in Discontent and its Civilizations treat their subjects with skill and beauty; sharing an idea or insight and then leaving it to the reader to nurture the thought further.


‘I Am Sorry to Think I Have Raised a Timid Son’ Shows Russell’s Potential

Kent Russell explores multiple, often bizarre manifestations of American masculinity in addition to his own.


Tuesday, March 31 2015

‘So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed’ Makes One Wonder, Are All Internet Outrages Fabricated?

Internet shamings are simple: people say dumb things, are then pilloried for it and in the ensuing frenzy lose their jobs and reputations.


‘Seraphim 266613336 Wings’ Will Set Your Imagination Afire

This little-known collaboration between, Mamoru Oshii and Satoshi Kon, two giants of anime was never completed. But it’s very much worth reading anyway.


Monday, March 30 2015

A Look Into the Shadows Cast by Hitler’s Rise to Power

A victory of endurance, Blood Brothers should also be recognised as a testament to the resilient spirit of art and culture.


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