News - Book Reviews

News - Book Reviews

September 23, 2022

LISTEN, WORLD! by Allison Gilbert and Julia Scheeres received stellar reviews from Publishers Weekly, Booklist, and the San Francisco Chronicle Datebook. Publishers Weekly raves: “[T]he authors paint a vivid picture of the challenges Elsie Robinson faced…The account is enlivened with copious excerpts from Robinson’s column and her memoir, all of which bring home her firebrand style. This entertaining account delivers.” Booklist praises the book as “[a] fascinating topic and solid biography that should please women’s history fans,” while Datebook writes: “Deeply researched, LISTEN, WORLD! includes passages from Robinson’s columns, books and letters, among other sources. Robinson was also an illustrator, and LISTEN, WORLD! includes a selection of her editorial cartoons, as well as photographs. The book’s prose is clear and engaging, with vivid descriptions…Over the course of this biography, readers come to recognize Robinson’s shockingly contemporary voice, and the authors highlight Robinson’s progressive views on the social issues of her time…A reminder to readers that though it’s now a century later, some things never change.” Seal Press will publish LISTEN, WORLD! on September 27, 2022.

August 5, 2022

Carlene Bauer’s stellar novel GIRLS THEY WRITE SONGS ABOUT was reviewed in The New Yorker’s Briefly Noted. They write: “This prickly-coy novel centers on two women who move to New York in the nineteen-nineties to become writers—or, as one of them, the narrator, puts it, ‘to be seen as an overpoweringly singular instance of late-twentieth-century womanhood.’ Bauer is a crackerjack chronicler of the slide into humility which follows ravenous early adulthood, when ‘we felt that we owed the books we’d read proof that we were as open and free as they had commanded us to be.’” Farrar, Straus and Giroux published the novel on June 21, 2022.

July 29, 2022

NPR/WBUR’s Here & Now recommend Kim Kelly’s FIGHT LIKE HELL as a “Memorable Summer Read,” praising the book’s success in “portraying the people she profiles as being otherwise ordinary, average workers who had enough courage in their convictions and spoke up when it mattered.” Meanwhile, 48 Hills declares it an “approachably written…tome well worth reading” whose “biggest triumph is in its wide-sweeping, sharply-accurate definition of what makes a worker,” spotlighting the voices of queer, disabled, BIPOC, female, and other marginalized voices in American labor history. One Signal Publishers published FIGHT LIKE HELL on April 26, 2022.

July 29, 2022

Ahead of its fall publication, DAUGHTER OF DARKNESS received a positive review from Publishers Weekly. They call the book “spellbinding sequel to CHILD OF LIGHT,” adding: “Brooks weaves a fast-paced tale full of twists and turns while keeping the backstory clear and the worldbuilding concise enough that those new to Auris’s story will have just as much fun as returning readers. This is sure to delight Brooks’s fans.” Del Rey will publish the book on October 11, 2022.

July 29, 2022

Elliot Ackerman’s forthcoming THE FIFTH ACT was selected by Air Mail for their Staff Picks roundup. They praise: “If you want to understand how the war in Afghanistan became such a debacle, this book is indispensable. Elliot Ackerman brilliantly explores last year’s fall of Kabul through his own experiences on the battlefield, expertly interwoven with his dramatic attempts from afar to evacuate, and thus keep from falling into the hands of the Taliban, Afghan nationals who had worked with the U.S. How much he succeeds in this endeavor gives the book its narrative tension, and along the way Ackerman reflects persuasively on who is to blame for the Taliban takeover.” Penguin Press will publish the book on August 9, 2022.

July 29, 2022

A starred review in Kirkus for Laura Warrell’s forthcoming SWEET, SOFT, PLENTY RHYTHM calls the book
“an impressive debut novel [that] weaves storylines of lost love, coming-of-age, and midlife crisis to chronicle a Boston-based jazz musician’s reckoning with the untidy spoils of his myriad affairs,” adding: “Though this is her first novel, Warrell displays delicately wrought characterization and a formidable command of physical and emotional detail. Her more intimate set pieces deliver sensual, erotic vibrations, and, most crucially for a novel that takes its title from Jelly Roll Morton, she knows how to write about the way it feels to deliver jazz—and receive it. A captivating modern romance evoking love, loss, recovery, and redemption.” Warren was also featured as one of Publishers Weekly’s “Writers to Watch” for Fall 2022. Pantheon will publish SWEET, SOFT, PLENTY RHYTHM on September 27, 2022.

July 29, 2022

LIFE IS EVERYWHERE by Lucy Ives was named one of Lit Hub’s “Most Anticipated Books of 2022.” Lit Hub associate editor Katie Yee writes: “I’m a big fan of the up-all-night, digressive kind of storytelling. And you just know that the author who brought us COSMOGONY is going to take us through some incredible tangents/” Graywolf Press will publish LIFE IS EVERYWHERE on October 4, 2022.

July 29, 2022

Jordan Castro’s THE NOVELIST was named an NPR Best Book of 2022, well as one of WPR’s “8 Books to Enjoy at the Beach This Summer.” Book critic Michael Schaub writes: "Castro’s fiction debut is as meta as it gets, but that’s part of its immense charm…[THE NOVELIST is] sweet, funny and beautifully written." The book also received a fantastic review from Taylor Lewandowski for Bookforum, who notes that the book “upends the historical 'drug novel' by offering a portrait of what life looks like in recovery,” and “the narrator’s hopeful reorientation out of this simulated, technological world opens space to be present, to think of his partner, and to return home humbled by the machinations of the actual world.” Soft Skull published the book on June 14, 2022.

July 15, 2022

Ed Yong’s AN IMMENSE WORLD received a stunning rave review from Mark Cocker in The New Statesman: “[Yong] seeks to offer his reader a panoramic, complex portrait of the sensory capacities that underpin a multitude of life ways…Chapter by chapter, the author builds an understanding of how each of the primary human senses – smell, taste, sight, hearing, touch – operate in other species. But Yong also delves into sensory experiences beyond our ken, which modern science is beginning to uncover…Yong’s excursion into the extraordinarily complex interior lives of so many creatures – insects, turtles, finches, robins, elephants, sharks, octopuses, whales and jewel wasps – shows us that there is an entire universe of unfathomable beauty all around us.” Random House published AN IMMENSE WORLD on June 21, 2022.

July 8, 2022

Keri Picolla published a wonderful review of Liska Jacobs’ THE PINK HOTEL for Kelp Journal. In the review, Picolla praises Jacobs’s rendering of Los Angeles’s twinned attraction and revulsion in the highest terms: “THE PINK HOTEL leaves a lasting impression, one of strange dichotomies of both hope and despair...Jacobs has deftly captured the bittersweetness of longing for the beauty that comes from hoping for a more perfect world. Even when the world is at its ugliest, spinning in an intoxicated shit show, there is an unbreakable human need to believe in love despite it all…The story of THE PINK HOTEL and its crazy cast of characters [will] stick with you, long after you’ve finished that last page. Hang on for a wild and haunting ride. You won’t be able to put this novel down.” MCD will publish the book on July 19, 2022.