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Fascinating and complex in its language and tone, this collection speaks to Barbosa’s relationship woes, her identity as a black woman, and her Cape Verdean roots. A Bennington College graduate, Barbosa peppers her debut with odes to jazz, island life, and references to the traditional Cape Verdean song "Sodade." Check out her series of "Strology" poems for a sample. ~ Reviewed by Joe Michon-Huneau
Teetering stylistically between satirical narrative and anthropological reportage, with timelines in three different eras, Dark Constellations is a perplexing psychosexual tour of the admixture of botany and computation, of magical realism and plausible dystopia. Each character’s sexual development is viewed from a lens both scientific and poetic, but with an almost clinical distance that gets stranger and more distorted the further back it pulls. Timelines in the future echo those in the past as characters experiment with hybrid species, hallucinatory orchids, viruses both biological and algorithmic, and hacker-inspired technological leaps in surveillance and connectivity. ~ Reviewed by Joe Michon-Huneau
Six hundred pages of sex, drugs and indie rock. Documenting the New York City rock explosion in the 2000s, Goodman interviews over 150 musicians, DJs, producers, journalists, record execs and NYC scenesters. Featuring the unruly rise to fame of bands like The Strokes, LCD Soundsystem, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The White Stripes, Interpol, TV on the Radio, Grizzly Bear, MGMT, and Vampire Weekend to name a handful, this comprehensive oral history is funny, boisterous, and more gossipy than a tabloid. ~ Reviewed by Joe Michon-Huneau
Stone imagines her grief as a purgatory of sorts, set in a metaphysical strip club. The title references the poem "The Möbius Strip of Grief," written by her grandmother, the notorious Ruth Stone, and its imagery is heavily referenced. Stone also invokes her mother in avian metaphors throughout. Haunting, strange, and oddly compelling. ~ Reviewed by Joe Michon-Huneau
A simple, heartfelt plea for human kindness, written by a fox whose tenuous grasp of the English language has tragicomic results. ~ Reviewed by Joe Michon-Huneau