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Reviews, Awards, and Interviews: CASE STUDY, ORDINARY WONDER TALES, CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH, and more!

IN THE NEWS!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been reviewed by Christian Lorentzen in the New York Times! The review was published online on November 1, 2022. Read the full NYT review here.

Lorentzen writes,

Case Study has a lot in common with the novels of Vladimir Nabokov and Roberto Bolaño, in which invented characters pass through tumultuous episodes of literary history that never quite happened, though it seems as if they should have. … Case Study is a diverting novel, overflowing with clever plays on and inversions of tropes of English intellectual and social life during the postwar decades.”

Case Study has been featured on Lit Hub as one of “18 new books to kick your November reading into gear.” The list was posted on November 1, 2022 and can be read here.

Case Study was reviewed by Jessica Brockmole for The Historical Novel Society. The review was published online on November 1, 2022. Read the full review here.

Brockmole writes,

Case Study is a dizzying dive into British counterculture of the 1960s and the radical anti-psychiatry movement … wildly inventive and slickly written. The notebooks feel so casually and authentically from the period, with ‘Rebecca’s’ word choices and the details she includes saying as much about 1960s British society as they do about her place in it. ‘Rebecca’ is deliciously unreliable as a narrator.”

Graeme Macrae Burnet has been interviewed by Lily Meyer for Crime Reads. The interview was posted online on November 3, 2022 an can be read here.

Meyer writes,

“Burnet propels readers through the novel with his fierce, hilarious intelligence.”

Case Study has also been excerpted in Lit Hub and featured by Vol 1. Brooklyn as part of their “November 2022 Book Preview.” The excerpt, and preview were published online on November 3, 2022. Read the Lit Hub here, and Vol 1. Brooklyn here.

Grab your copy of Case Study here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Emily Urquhart, author of Ordinary Wonder Tales (November 1, 2022), was interviewed by Lisa Godfrey on CBC Ideas! The episode on hauntings aired on October 25, 2022. Emily’s segment begins at 25:00 mins. Listen to the full episode here.

Ordinary Wonder Tales has been reviewed by Kathleen Rooney in LIBER: A Feminist Review. The review will be published in print in their Winter 2022 issue. Read the full review here.

Kathleen writes,

“In Ordinary Wonder Tales, Urquhart stylishly combines her personal experiences with her academic expertise, leading to a reading experience that feels entertaining and casual yet also edifying … It’s a testament to Urquhart’s own formidable storytelling skill that each of her essays inspires a quiet awe.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was been listed in CBC Books and Toronto Life!

The CBC Books list, “20 Canadian books we can’t wait to read in November” was published on November 2, 2022. You can check it out here.

The Toronto Life list, “Sixteen things to see, do, read and hear in Toronto this November” was published on October 28, 2022. You can read the full list here.

Order your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

Luke Hathaway‘s poem “As the part hanteth after the water brooks” from The Affirmations (April 5, 2022), won the Confederation Poets Prize by Arc Poetry. The prize winner was announced on October 27, 2022. You can read the full announcement here.

This year’s judge, Brecken Hancock, had this to say about the winning poem:

“In 12 incredibly short lines, Luke Hathaway has captured how we survive and thrive by chance, by lucky accident. These spare lines take the reader on a profound journey with the speaker who has gone “uphill to the well / where I went, as I thought // for my water” only to find an utterly new form of thirst and its remedy waiting there instead. A previously unrecognized, but life-threatening, form of dehydration is alleviated (in what feels like the nick of time) by the startling discovery of a source to quench it. Rather than dwell on what had previously been missing, a sorrowful lack, the poem ends in affirmation—communicating a resonant relief, and, beyond that, the joy and ecstasy that can finally be embodied and expressed when our deepest needs are recognized and met.”

Get your copy of The Affirmations here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Confessions with Keith by Pauline Holdstock (October 25, 2022), has been reviewed at Focus on Victoria on October 31, 2022. Read the whole review here.

Reviewer Amy Reiswig writes,

Confessions with Keith reminds us that life is a raw, radiant, and ridiculous story unfolding moment by moment for everyone in their separate subjectivities. It deserves laughter. It deserves tears. It is made more bearable by books like this, the literary equivalent of uncensored midnight conversation over cups of tea or glasses—plural—of wine. What Vita observes of festival street performers could well be said of reading Holdstock’s newest creation: ‘It was a shared experience of human life, a little bit of eternity together.'”

Confessions With Keith has also been reviewed at the BC Review. Read the whole review here.

Reviewer Candace Fertile writes,

“Things going wrong on many levels is the focus of the novel, but Vita’s ability to plough through the problems and often see the humour even when exhausted is refreshing … Confessions with Keith deals with real life issues in a frenetic and funny manner.”

Get your copy of Confessions with Keith here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place: Selected Stories by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been excerpted at Open Book. The excerpt is from the story “Translation” and was published Nov 1, 2022. You can read it here.

This Time, That Place also received a starred review at Quill & Quire. The review was published on November 2, 2022. Check out the whole review here.

Reviewer Steven W. Beattie writes,

“Blaise is … almost preternaturally adept at noticing things … sublime technique and linguistic finesse [are] showcased in these inestimable short works.”

Pick up your copy of This Time, That Place here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Michael Hingston, author of Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda (September 13, 2022), has been reviewed by MA Orthofer in The Complete Review. The article was published on October 30, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Orthofer writes,

Try Not to be Strange is an enjoyable account of a bizarre not-quite-real place, with a rich cast of characters—not least Hingston himself, who amusingly tracks his own obsessiveness.”

Michael Hingston has also been interviewed on Across the Pond podcast and New & Used podcast! Both episodes were published on November 1, 2022. You can listen to Across the Pond here, and New & Used here.

Get your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

CASE STUDY, CONFESSION WITH KEITH, TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE and more: Reviews and Lists!

IN THE NEWS!

CASE STUDY

Case Study by Graeme Macrae Burnet (November 1, 2022) has been reviewed in the Michigan Daily! The review was published online on September 21, 2022. Read the full review here.

Julian Wray writes,

Case Study reflects on relationships of power: the physical power of abusive men over women, the lingering power of memory over oneself. It reflects on the power of one’s wishes over one’s reality, the schism we create in ourselves when we resign to our present state and nothing more. Rebecca is a case study of what happens when desires run away on their own, such that a person is left to watch them go.”

Case Study has also received a starred review in Foreword Reviews! The review will be printed in their November/December issue. Check out the full review here.

An excerpt from the review:

“The fictional author and Burnet share the same initials, which should be a clue as to how close the book will come to breaking the fourth wall … The matryoshka-style layering of narratives, each dependent on the other, is engaging and disorienting. Case Study is an immersive novel that stretches its fiction to fact-like proportions.”

Order your copy of Case Study here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Confessions With Keith by Pauline Holdstock (September 20, 2022) was reviewed at the Winnipeg Free Press by Bev Sandell Greenberg! The article, “Domestic story of a dysfunctional delight” was published online on September 26, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Greenberg writes,

“Replete with sensory details, the four-part narrative consists of journals written in Vita’s voice in succinct, cheeky prose … The journals establish a sense of intimacy that endears us to Vita, but they also convey a level of tension palpable on every page … Holdstock’s fast-paced comic novel with its entertaining narrative will captivate readers, especially those who relish domestic tales.”

Confessions With Keith was reviewed in The Vancouver Sun by Brett Josef Grubisic! The article, “Holdstock extracts witty, painful glimpse into one woman’s revolving life” was published online on September 21, 2022. Read the full article here.

Grubisic writes,

“Magnetic … artfully expressed—funny, honest, wry, intimate—private thoughts … On page after assured page, Vita [is] confounded thrilled, irked, hurt, and envious—about minutia as well as the big picture—and all of which are facets of what she calls ‘the senselessness of human existence.'”

Get your copy of Confessions with Keith here!

ON BROWSING

On Browsing by Jason Guriel (October 8, 2022) has been excerpted in The Walrus. They’ve titled it “I Miss Being Bored at the Mall.”

You can read the whole excerpt here.

Grab your copy of On Browsing here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been included in the Quill & Quire Fall Books Preview published online on September 21, 2022. Check out the full list here.

Attila Berki writes,

“Mark Bourrie revives the life of George McCullagh—a charismatic high-school dropout, a self-made millionaire, the creator and owner of the Globe and Mail, and a man with great political potential—whose fall in the mid-20th century would be as steep as his rise to prominence.”

Order your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try Not to Be Strange: The Curious History of the Kingdom of Redonda by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been featured in the New York Times as part of their Newly Published column. The article was published on September 21, 2022. You can read the full article here.

The New York Times writes,

“This combination literary history, travelogue and cautionary tale tells the history of the formerly uninhabited Caribbean island of Redonda and its development into a ‘micronation’ ruled by writers, beginning with the science fiction author M.P. Shiel in 1880.”

Try Not to Be Strange was also featured in Fine Books & Collections as one of their editor’s picks. The article was published online on September 16, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Fine Books & Collections writes,

“Combining travelogue, memoir, and literary history, Hingston has crafted a fascinating tale full of eccentric characters. Editions of all sizes play a role in the drama, and bibliophiles will also relish the author’s auction experience.”

Grab your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed at Kirkus Reviews. The review will go live September 28, 2022.

The reviewer writes,

“These stories cover ground not only geographically. They are also crowded with character and incident, always fiercely and smartly observed … Blaise has gathered here a smart, sprawling collection of stories about family, rootlessness, and identity.”

Grab your copy of This Time, That Place here!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE, A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE, QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL, BIG MEN FEAR ME, and more: Latest Reviews and Interviews!

IN THE NEWS!

TRY NOT TO BE STRANGE

Try No to Be Strange by Michael Hingston (September 13, 2022) has been reviewed by Robert J. Wiersema in the Toronto Star. The review was posted online on September 16, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Wiersema writes,

“That spirit, the tongue-in-cheek mock seriousness of the whole endeavour, and the playfulness of its participants, is a keen factor in Try Not to Be Strange. The book is a delightful reading experience, utterly unexpected and unlike anything you are likely to read this year.”

Try Not to Be Strange was also reviewed by Kevin Hardcastle in Quill and Quire on September 16, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Hardcastle writes,

Try Not to Be Strange is a passionate and skillfully written exploration of an extraordinary world and those who search for such places to get to the heart of what stories really mean. Hingston’s thirst for deeper knowledge is palpable, and it illuminates what the kingdom might really stand for.”

Grab your copy of Try Not to Be Strange here!

 

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has been reviewed in the Literary Review of Canada by Jessica Dunn Wolfe. The article, “Whims and Longings” was published online on September 12, 2022. Read the full article here.

Wolfe writes,

A Factotum in the Book Trade displays the prose style of someone who takes inordinate delight in the unlikely conjunctions afforded by such places. Kociejowski pinpoints the joys of bookstores for readers and booksellers both, while sketching a miscellany of the personalities he has encountered throughout his career.”

Grab your copy of A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL

Querelle of Roberval (August 2, 2022) by Kevin Lambert, trans. by Donald Winkler, has been shortlisted for the Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize! The shortlist was announced at 10 am ET on September 14, 2022. You can read the full shortlist here.

The judges’ citation for the Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize:

“Kevin Lambert’s fearless novel is a profane, funny, bleak, touching, playful, and outrageous satire of sexual politics, labour, and capitalism. In ecstatic and cutting prose, it gleefully illuminates both the broad socio-political tensions of life in a Quebec company town and the intimate details of sex, lust, loneliness, and gay relationships in such a place. Like its central character, the book is brash, beautiful, quasi-mythic, and tragic. Most improbably, for all its daring and provocation, Querelle of Roberval is lyrically, even tenderly written.”

Querelle of Roberval has also been reviewed by Aaron Obedkoff in the Literary Review of Canada. The review was published online on September 12, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Obedkoff calls Lambert

“a skilled examiner of depravity … Lambert’s excavation into the depths of desire and provocation is as thrilling as it is disturbing, as beautiful as it is revolting. This is a difficult balance to manage, yet it may well be the key to his success.”

Pick up your copy of Querelle of Roberval here!

BIG MEN FEAR ME

Big Men Fear Me by Mark Bourrie (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed in the October issue of the Literary Review of Canada by Dave Marks Shribman. The review is online as of September 12, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Shribman writes,

“Mark Bourrie’s remarkable—and long overdue—biography of one of the most consequential and least remembered Canadians of the past century. … Bourrie toiled for years to resurrect [George McCullagh], but, I’m glad to say, he did not wipe away the carbuncles, boils, and blisters. His portrait of a man who once was among Canada’s most powerful figures is, to choose two apt terms, both melancholy and masterly.”

Big Men Fear Me was also included by Nathaniel G. Moore in the Miramichi Reader’s ‘Fall Preview Part Two’! The list was published on September 5, 2022. Check out the full preview here.

Moore writes,

“If you love Mad Men and Netflix biopics about ruthless tie-wearing maniacs, if you’re wanting the fourth wall to come crashing down on a discussion about class and poverty … you’ll probably need to pick up [Big Men Fear Me] from Biblioasis.”

Order your copy of Big Men Fear Me here!

THIS TIME, THAT PLACE

This Time, That Place: Selected Stories by Clark Blaise (October 18, 2022) has been reviewed in the Literary Review of Canada. The review was published in print on September 12, 2022.

An excerpt from the review,

“The adolescent yo-yo takes many forms in This Time, That Place (Biblioasis), which recalls an old cigar box filled with undated and often cryptic postcards. […] Individually or as a group, these loosely linked stories will reward multiple readings.”

Grab your copy of This Time, That Place here!

ORDINARY WONDER TALES

Emily Urquhart, author of Ordinary Wonder Tales (November 1, 2022), has been interviewed by Joan Sullivan in the The Newfoundland Quarterly! The interview was published on September 16, 2022. Read the full interview here.

Urquhart says in the interview,

“Our most personal fears, the worries that visit us in our waking night hours, are not new. We feel as if they are specific to us and our lives but once you regain some of your logic in the daylight hours, you can turn to the wisdom in the world’s great folklore bank and discover a story that might help you to understand your most confusing and difficult fears, or, if not understand these fears, at least let you know that you aren’t alone.”

Ordinary Wonder Tales was also included by Nathaniel G. Moore in the Miramichi Reader’s ‘Fall Preview Part Two’! The list was published on September 5, 2022. Check out the full preview here.

Moore writes,

Ordinary Wonder Tales will have readers conjuring up memories of their first encounters with fairy tales, fables, and storytelling … if you’re compelled to imagine the mysterious forgotten worlds of imagination, of fables and possibilities … pick up [this book].”

Order your copy of Ordinary Wonder Tales here!

SHIMMER

Shimmer by Alex Pugsley (May 17, 2022) was reviewed in the Miramichi Reader. The review was published online on September 11, 2022. Read the full review here.

Heidi Greco writes,

“His greatest gift as a writer is, I believe, his ability to carry dialogue … a brave departure from the highly-praised Aubrey McKee.

Pick up your copy of Shimmer here!

CONFESSIONS WITH KEITH

Pauline Holdstock‘s forthcoming novel, Confessions With Keith (September 20, 2022) was featured as an editor’s fall pick on 49th Shelf! The article was published online on September 14, 2022.

You can read the full article here.

Pick up your copy of Confessions With Keith here!

CHEMICAL VALLEY, SHIMMER, EYES OF THE RIGEL: Reviews and Interviews!

IN THE NEWS

CHEMICAL VALLEY

Chemical Valley cover

David Huebert, author of Chemical Valley (October 19, 2021), has been interviewed by Jeffrey Dupuis in the The Quarantine Review! The interview was published in their print edition on July 20, 2022. You can read the full interview on pg. 30 here.

In the interview, David says,

“Environmental subjects are polarizing and tend to get reduced through the discourses of climate martyrdom and sensationalism. […] I try not to reduce things to Good and Evil; I seek to focus instead on mess, entanglement, convolution, and complication. I think that’s a truer approach, and it’s one that suits the leaky metaphorics of oils and swamps, what I think of, sometimes, as the dank.”

Order your copy of Chemical Valley here!

SHIMMER

Shimmer (May 17, 2022) by Alex Pugsley was featured on The Quarantine Review‘s ‘Summertime Reading Hotlist’! Check out the list here.

The Quarantine Review on Shimmer:
There is something very intimate, very personal about these stories that remind us of the power held by a good collection of stories. We not only see the author’s growth as a stylist, but also witness the growth and transformation, or failure to grow, of the characters. Pugsley gives us windows into lives that are both familiar and yet distant, exploring them within the limits of the form. Shimmer is a great collection for fans of short stories looking for a summer read that will stick with them through the changing seasons.”
Get your copy of Shimmer here!

EYES OF THE RIGEL

Eyes of the Rigel (April 5, 2022) by Roy Jacobsen also appeared on The Quarantine Review‘s ‘Summertime Reading Hotlist’! Check out the list here.

The Quarantine Review on Eyes of the Rigel:

“Jacobsen’s novel, both epic and intimate, takes us on a journey through a world in the process of rebuilding, a world of uncertainty that has a familiar feeling to many of us as we emerge from the pandemic. This translation by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw has beautiful rhythms and reads like an elegy. It is a great read for someone looking to be transported to another time and place and feel like they experienced it.”

Get your copy of Eyes of the Rigel here!

Check out the first two books in the series here!

QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL, DANTE’S INDIANA, A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE, THE AFFIRMATIONS, THE MUSIC GAME: Interviews and Reviews!

IN THE NEWS

QUERELLE OF ROBERVAL

Querelle of Roberval (August 2, 2022) by Kevin Lambert, trans. by Donald Winkler has been reviewed in Montreal Review of Books! The review was posted online today, July 4, 2022, and will be in their Summer 2022 print edition.

Reviewer Alexandra Trnka writes,

“A vibrant storm of gossip and myth … The language of the novel is rich and evocative, a compliment to both Lambert’s and Winkler’s instincts for poetry. Lambert displays his linguistic skill equally in images of the erotic and the abject, in a prose that entices and disturbs at the same time.

“[Lambert] dares us not to flinch … a gory, sensual, and provocative exploration of sex and violence, and their potential to redeem lives that have been deemed, for one reason or another, not worth living.”

You can read the full review here.

Order your copy of Querelle of Roberval here!

DANTE’S INDIANA

Randy Boyagoda, author of Dante’s Indiana (September 2021), was featured on an episode of CBC Ideas. The episode was posted online and aired on June 29, 2022 at 8PM ET.

Randy Boyagoda says to producer Greg Kelly,

“And so if I think about Indiana, I think about the middle of the middle of the middle of America. And then I think about Terre Haute being high ground. Well, in so many different ways that just becomes, for me, an American figuration of Purgatory, where others would see Inferno. That’s again, the hopefulness.”

You can listen to the full episode here.

Grab your copy of Dante’s Indiana here!

Or, start the series with Original Prin here!

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

Marius Kociejowski discusses his latest book, A Factotum in the Book Trade (April 26, 2022), on The Biblio File podcast, hosted by Nigel Beale. The episode was published online on July 4, 2022.

In the interview, Kociejowski says,

“When I was first in England, you could go into just about any small town and head straight for the bookshop. By and large, they are all gone. With those bookshops have gone the possibility of conversation. […] I had this rather brash young Italian marine biologist come in [to the bookshop] and we started talking about why it is that bookshops are closing. He rather blatantly accused me, or rather my generation, of having failed to pass that knowledge on. And I think that may be, to an extent, true.”

You can listen to the full episode here.

Get your copy of A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

The Affirmations by Luke Hathaway (April 5, 2022) was reviewed by rob mclennan on his blog. The review was published online on July 3, 2022.

mclennan writes,

“Hathaway seems to explore the boundaries of poetic form as it relates to an operatic storytelling, pushing at the edges of older forms with a new hand, and a new eye, and seeing what just might be possible.”

You can read the full review here.

Pick up your copy of The Affirmations here!

THE MUSIC GAME

The Music Game by Stefanie Clermont, translated by JC Sutcliffe (February 8, 2022), has been listed by CBC Books on their summer reading list! The list was posted online on June 23, 2022. You can see the full list here.

Grab a copy of The Music Game here!

 

CHEMICAL VALLEY, EYES OF THE RIGEL, THE AFFIRMATIONS, HAIL THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN: Media Hits

IN THE NEWS!

CHEMICAL VALLEY

Chemical Valley cover

Chemical Valley by David Huebert (October 19, 2021), has been featured by CBC Books as part of ‘11 Canadian books to read for Earth Day 2022’! The list was posted online on April 22, 2022. Check out the full list here.

Chemical Valley was also reviewed by Peter Szuban in PRISM International! The review was posted online on April 21, 2022. Read the full review here.

Szuban writes,

“The characters in David Huebert’s new short story collection Chemical Valley live in a world that has been molded and shaped by neoliberalism and the oil industry—where the vulnerability of their bodies is constantly being subjected to a vague calculus that includes economic precarity, shifting personal relationships, and a natural environment lurching towards catastrophe. It’s a situation that could easily elicit nihilism, doom, and mourning—a kind of eco-grief—and yet, the various stories in this collection strive and yearn towards a sublime toxicity that finds beauty amidst the debris, and accordingly, in the lives of its inhabitants.”

Get your copy of Chemical Valley here!

EYES OF THE RIGEL

The third novel in Roy Jacobsen‘s The Barrøy Chronicles, Eyes of the Rigel (April 5, 2022), has been excerpted in Lit Hub! The excerpt was posted online on April 21, 2022. You can read the full excerpt here.

Get your copy of Eyes of the Rigel here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

The Affirmations by Luke Hathaway (April 5, 2022) was excerpted in Lit Hub. The excerpt was published online on April 22, 2022.

You can view the poem, “As the Hart Panteth After the Water Brooks,” here.

Get your copy of The Affirmations here!

HAIL, THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN

Hail, the Invisible Watchman by Alexandra Oliver (April 5, 2022), was reviewed in The Miramichi Reader. The review was published online on April 25, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Alison Manley writes:

Hail, the Invisible Watchman by Alexandra Oliver is a true triumph, with tight, well-constructed poems creating multiple worlds and stories. Oliver’s use of formal structure and metre is flawless, rich and enveloping. […] Oliver flits between contemporary settings to more distant ones, from the mundane every day to pop culture and all strange manners in between. […] The range of this collection is spectacular. The twists that Oliver places in her verses are sly and magical, the way she uses language and metre to craft such strong imagery in a handful of lines is truly masterful.”

Get your copy of Hail, the Invisible Watchman here!

POGUEMAHONE: Rave Reviews and Interviews!

IN THE NEWS!

POGUEMAHONE

Poguemahone by Patrick McCabe (May 3, 2022) was reviewed in The Irish Examiner on April 24, 2022. Check out the full review here.

Reviewer Josephine Fenton writes:

“This is a great enormous book by a great Irish author and should be welcomed by everyone in this great country and the world beyond. You might think, on first sight, that Poguemahone was following in the wake of Finnegan in its attempt to be enormously long, very dense and quite inaccessible. But it is not, at all. You can slip into it like a blunt knife through butter.”

Poguemahone was excerpted in RTE – Raidió Teilifís Éireann, published online on April 25, 2022. You can read the excerpt here.

Patrick McCabe was interviewed about Poguemahone in The Guardian. The interview was published online on April 24, 2022. You can read the complete article here.

Tim Adams writes:

“In the pantheon of storied Irish writers—Joyce in Dublin, Yeats on the west coast—McCabe has a special place as the conjuror of the small-town middle. […] The occasion for our lunch is McCabe’s new book, Poguemahone, an extraordinary 600-page free verse novel, already hailed in the Observer as “this century’s Ulysses” […] Once you get tuned to McCabe’s brilliant playful wavelength, after a couple or three pages, you find yourself at home in Aunty Nano’s famous late-night club […] and spending too much time at the ‘premier crash pad in all of north London’, paradiso or inferno, depending on your politics.”

Patrick McCabe was also interviewed in The Independent, published online on April 24, 2022. You can read the full interview here.

Emily Hourican writes:

“The book—a hefty 600 pages—is written in verse form. And, for those of you put off by the very idea, don’t be. It is by turns energetic, hilarious, tragic and terrifying, and easy to follow once you fall into the beat of it—’the beat of a bodhran, which is the beat of Irish history,’ says McCabe.”

 

Order your copy of Poguemahone here!

 

POGUEMAHONE: Reviews in the New York Times and more!

POGUEMAHONE

Poguemahone by Patrick McCabe (May 3, 2022) was reviewed by John Williams in the New York Times! The review was published online on April 20, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Williams writes:

Poguemahone is like a high dive: The toughest part of reading it might be convincing your feet to leave the board. Once you’ve done that, gravity does the rest.”

An excerpt of Poguemahone‘s New York Times review was included in LitHub‘s list of ‘5 Book Reviews You Need to Read This Week’! The list was posted on April 21, 2022 and can be read here.

Poguemahone‘s New York Times review was also featured in Library Journal‘s round-up posted on April 22, 2022. Check out the article here.

 

Poguemahone  was reviewed by Paul Perry in The Independent (Ireland). The review, ‘Patrick McCabe’s Novel Poguemahone is a Triumphant Bum-rush of Ribald Verse,’ was published online on April 11, 2022. Check out the full article here.

Perry writes:

Poguemahone is a shape-shifting epic of the Irish in England, steeped in music and folklore, crammed with characters, both real and imagined, on a scale McCabe has never attempted before. Indeed, among his 14 novels and two Booker Prize nominations, this stands out as risky, experimental work by an artist reluctant to rest on his laurels. Modernist and eager to push the boundaries of his own art and the art form of the novel, here is a novelist and novel to celebrate in all their ribald, audacious, outrageous, and compelling brilliance.”

 

Poguemahone was reviewed and featured as the “Book of the Day” in The Guardian. The review was published online April 22, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Ian Duhig writes:

“A major Irish writer of the postwar generation, Patrick McCabe is best known for his early novels The Butcher Boy (1992) and Breakfast on Pluto (1998), both shortlisted for the Booker prize […] His career since has shown a willingness to experiment in a wide range of forms and styles, climaxing in this verse novel, Poguemahone […] Though it won’t appeal to all fans of his earliest work, McCabe may be right when he claims that Poguemahone is his best book: it is startlingly original, moving, funny, frightening and beautiful.”

And it’s less than a month away from the North American launch of Poguemahone! Join author Patrick McCabe as he delves into his rollicking new book. This virtual launch will take place on Sunday, May 15 at 3PM ET. The event is organized by Books in Common NW and will be hosted by James Crossley.

Register for the event here!

Get your copy of Poguemahone from Biblioasis here!

 

THE DAY-BREAKERS, THE AFFIRMATIONS, HAIL THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN, EYES OF THE RIGEL, A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE, POGUEMAHONE: Media Hits!

IN THE NEWS!

THE DAY-BREAKERS

The Day-Breakers by Michael Fraser (April 5, 2022) has been featured by CBC Books as part of ’27 Canadian books coming out in April we can’t wait to read.’ The list was published online on April 5, 2022. Take a look at the full list here.

Michael Fraser has been interviewed by Valentino Assenza on HOWL (CIUT) about his new collection, The Day-Breakers. The episode aired on April 5, 2022 at 10pm et. You can listen to/download the full HOWL interview here.

Michael Fraser was also interviewed by Pearl Pirie on Pearl Pirie about The Day-Breakers. The Pearl Pirie interview was published online on April 5, 2022. You can read his interview with Pearl Pirie here.

Get your copy of The Day-Breakers here!

THE AFFIRMATIONS

The Affirmations by Luke Hathaway (April 5, 2022), was reviewed by Holly M. Wendt in Ploughshares: ‘Conversation in The Affirmations.’ The review was published online on April 12, 2022. You can read the complete review here.

Wendt writes:

“The depth of references offers opportunities for entry and distance alike. Ranging freely across centuries of works, sacred and secular, Hathaway’s book, published last week, is as deftly conversant with John Donne as with Auden, as expert in its command of music, metrical and lexical as the maritime landscape. […] The object […] of The Affirmations, is not simply reifying what has come before, but challenging, re-imagining, and reclaiming what has been made into a tool of oppression.”

Order The Affirmations here!

HAIL, THE INVISIBLE WATCHMAN

Hail, the Invisible Watchman by Alexandra Oliver (April 5, 2022), has received a starred review from Annick MacAskill on Quill & Quire. The review was published online on April 1, 2022. Check out the full review here.

MacAskill writes:

“This last sequence, a series of English sonnets spoken in the voices of two of Wilson’s characters as well as a third-person narrator, is particularly well realized. Oliver proves herself a master at her chosen form; the sonnet and its demanding rhyme scheme serve as a springboard for the narrative moments and reflections she depicts. […]

Oliver displays a fidelity to rhyming verse not often found in contemporary Canadian poetry. The formal aspects of Oliver’s writing do not detract from, but rather enable her quick wit and clear-eyed assessments.”

Order Hail, the Invisible Watchman here!

EYES OF THE RIGEL

The third novel in Roy Jacobsen’s The Barrøy Chronicles, Eyes of the Rigel (April 5, 2022), has been reviewed in Publishers Weekly! The review was posted online on January 28. Though the review states that this is the last of the series, I’m pleased to let you know that Roy has surprised us with a fourth novel, and we will be continuing Ingrid’s journey in Spring 2023. You can read the full review here.

The reviewer writes:

“[An] expressive story of a woman’s search for her lover in post-WWII Norway. The translators inventively capture Ingrid’s dialect (“An’ thas knew this all th’taim”) as well as the power of the tense interactions between the characters. This delicate account of yearning perfectly caps the strong series.”

Order Eyes of the Rigel here!

Check out the first two books in the series, The Unseen and White Shadow, here!

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has been reviewed by Danny Heitman in the Wall Street Journal as part of the article ‘5 Tales of Top-Shelf Book People.’ The article was published online on April 7, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Heitman writes:

“His polished sentences faintly resonate with Proustian echoes … Mr. Kociejowski … has a loose sense of narrative that perfectly simulates an afternoon ramble through a vintage bookshop. A dizzying diversity of books and authors strike against each other, creating sparks of insight. In the space of a few pages, he mentions Robert Louis Stevenson, Henry Green, Emily Dickinson, William Hazlitt, J.L. Carr and Patrick Leigh Fermor, offering concise assessments of each. Frequent footnotes, rendered as chatty asides, deepen his memoir’s digressive charm.”

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has also been reviewed in the Ottawa Review of Books by Timothy Niedermann! The review was published online on April 4, 2022. Have a look at the full review here.

Niedermann writes:

“Despite having a library with upwards of 1,000 volumes, Kociejowski does not feel he himself is a collector, however. He calls himself a “bibliophile”: a book lover. And this is the essence of A Factotum in the Book Trade. It is about love for books.

A Factotum in the Book Trade is an extraordinary work that will give all readers an increased appreciation for what books are and the many intricate roles that books play in our lives.”

A Factotum in the Book Trade was reviewed by Michael Turner in the British Columbia Review. The article, ‘Where the Magic Happens,’ was published online on April 8, 2022. You can read the full article here.

Turner writes:

“[I]n the book’s swirling opening chapter […], we find him reflecting on a working life (mostly in the antiquarian book trade) […] Mortality sets off this reflection (“What is forever when set against the universe? About the length of a sticking plaster”) (p. 1), then books (“‘The world is made,’ says Stéphane Mallarmé, ‘in order to result in a beautiful book.’ All else — the filling of an order, the cataloguing of a book — is mere procedure”) (p. 2) and bookselling (“The book trade is naturally secretive even when it pretends otherwise. What one might think is an open book is actually a closed one”) (p. 3).

It is this interplay between books (Kociejowski has authored books of poetry and travel writing) and bookselling (a staging ground into which enter books, employees and casual customers, but also literary archives, personal libraries, collectors and celebrated authors like Patti Smith, Robert Graves and Bruce Chatwin) where the magic happens.”

Order A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

POGUEMAHONE

Poguemahone (May 3, 2022) by Patrick McCabe has been reviewed by Sean O’Brien for The Telegraph. The review was published online on April 5, 2022. You can read the full review here.

O’Brien writes:

“McCabe, best known for The Butcher Boy and Breakfast on Pluto (both Booker shortlisted in the 1990s, and adapted into films), is not the first prose writer to seek the lingering prestige of poetry without having to write it. In fact it’s easy to ignore the verse, except as an effective scoring method: the reader hears the book as something spoken aloud, or whispered, or snarled, or insinuated or spat into his ear. The voice is an insistent companion who, having got hold of an elbow, has no plans to stop until his hour is exhausted or the auditor collapses under the weight of memory, bile, repetition and implication.”

Patrick McCabe was interviewed on BBC Front Row for Poguemahone. The interview aired on April 12, 2022. Poguemahone was also publicly announced as a May Indie Next pick by the American Booksellers Association on April 12, 2022.

You can listen to the full BBC episode here and view the May Indie Next list here.

Preorder Poguemahone here!

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE, POGUEMAHONE, SAY THIS, CHEMICAL VALLEY, DANTE’S INDIANA and ORIGINAL PRIN: Rave Reviews!

IN THE NEWS

A FACTOTUM IN THE BOOK TRADE

A Factotum in the Book Trade by Marius Kociejowski (April 26, 2022) has been reviewed in the April edition of the Midwest Book Review by James Cox. The review will be published online in the coming weeks.

Cox writes:

“An absolute ‘must’ for the personal reading lists of all authors, publishers, booksellers and dedicated bibliophiles, A Factotum in the Book Trade is an absorbing, entertaining, informational, and inherently fascinating combination of memoir and book trader insights and commentaries. One of those life stories that will linger on in the mind and memory of the reader long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf, this paperback edition of Marius Kociejowski’s A Factotum in the Book Trade should be on the Biography/Memoir shelf of every community, college, and university library.”

Preorder A Factotum in the Book Trade here!

POGUEMAHONE

Poguemahone (May 3, 2022) by Patrick McCabe has been reviewed by Anthony Cummings for The Daily Mail. The review was published online on April 1, 2022. You can read the full review here.

Cummings writes:

“No one who read McCabe’s 1992 novel The Butcher Boy could forget its chilling depiction of a troubled schoolboy in 1960s Ireland. His latest, a dizzying verse novel 600 pages long, is equally likely to haunt the mind. It has so many layers that we’re never sure where we are, but very roughly speaking, it centres on Una, an Irish woman recalling life in a London squat during the 1970s. The story of how she fell for a poet—and then caught him in flagrante—is intercut with the painful tale of her mother, Dots, a call girl in 1950s Soho. All this and more unfolds in a spectral tornado of voices, which calls into question the status of the narrator, Dan…”

Preorder Poguemahone here!

SAY THIS

Say This (March 1, 2022) by Elise Levine has been featured by 49th Shelf as part of their ‘Editors’ Picks for April 2022′ list. The list was published online on April 1, 2022.

You can check out the full list here.

Get your copy of Say This here!

CHEMICAL VALLEY

Chemical Valley cover

Chemical Valley by David Huebert (October 19, 2021), has been reviewed in bUneke Magazine! The review appears in their March issue, and was posted online on March 30, 2022. You can read the full review here.

The reviewer writes,

“Huebert works to create a world that seems almost futuristic then slowly reveals that he speaks of now and how our choices are destroying our health and our planet. He makes us feel the emotional side of well-developed characters as they face the world in fear and wonder.”

Grab your copy of Chemical Valley here!

ORIGINAL PRIN & DANTE’S INDIANA

The first two novels in Randy Boyagoda’s loose trilogy, Original Prin (September 25, 2018) and Dante’s Indiana (September 7, 2021), were featured in an article in the latest issue of Image Journal. The feature was posted online on March 31, 2022, and is in the print version of their latest issue. You can read the full article here.

Doug Sikkema writes:

“Boyagoda’s novel might be one of the best ways to ‘remember Dante forward’—to remember him in the present tense. By channeling Dante in a satirical vein, Boyagoda helps us see the impulses shaping the American and global economic order as spiritual forces—and the decisions made by individuals, communities, and even nations as products of disordered desire.”

Get your copy of Original Prin here!

Get your copy of Dante’s Indiana here!