Beyond I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969)


The first volume of Maya Angelou's autobiography begins with Marguerite arriving in Stamps, Arkansas, at three years old, with her brother, Bailey, one year older, in the care of Miss. Annie Henderson, their grandmother ("Momma"). It moves from the store to the churchyard, from hymn-singing to beatings. It crosses time and space fluidly.

Beyond I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969)2018-03-22T11:23:49-05:00

Talking Time: Life after Life, The Luminaries


Random House, 2013 The slippery question of time is often posed on the page. And with books, it’s different. In music, listeners are engaged at a pace dictated by the composer’s notation, beats counted as the bars pass, the audience arriving synchronously at the end of the piece.

Talking Time: Life after Life, The Luminaries2015-10-20T07:58:55-05:00

Greg Kearney’s The Desperates (2013)


In the beginning, Joel gets a new job. It's a moment that might be filled with potential, promise. He could be the figure on the cover of the novel, leaping into the air. Alternatively, Joel could be that figure on the cover and be plummeting to the earth, about to

Greg Kearney’s The Desperates (2013)2020-10-22T12:22:44-05:00

Rawi Hage’s Carnival (2012)


Fly's voice is the ticket which offers admission to Rawi Hage's Carnival. It is not, however, a front row seat. It is a seat to one side, on the margins. But this is where some of the most interesting things can be observed. (Michael Ondaatje set The Cat's Table

Rawi Hage’s Carnival (2012)2014-03-20T15:57:07-05:00

Building: Dr. Brinkley’s Tower


I first posted about Robert Hough's novel in a whirl, having read Dr. Brinkley's Tower in less than 24 hours, falling fast and fully into the story. I avoided specifics about the plot and the characters, because the wonder of this novel is rooted in the telling. House of Anansi,

Building: Dr. Brinkley’s Tower2020-08-19T08:27:35-05:00
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