I was introduced to Susan Minot through her 1989 short story collection "Lust." I was immediately attracted to the sparseness of her style and the way she wrote women who were scared of their own emotions.
Thirty years later, Minot has graced us with a new collection of stories that gives breath to characters who are "ruled by feeling." No one holds a candle to the way she writes about the interior and exterior lives of women and their longing for connection.
In this collection Minot plays with memory and structure, sometimes successfully and sometimes not. She is constantly forcing me to ask questions I don't want answered. The precision of her sentences and the vivid details will make any reader fall in love with her writing.
In this exquisite collection of eleven short stories, van den Berg gives voices to unsteady women lurking in the shadows of their own lives. With a controlled and transcendent writiing style, she establishes herself as a writer ahead of her time.
This collection is not for the faint of heart. Emotional and soul-rattling, these essays will gut punch you in the best possible way.
Is there anything more important than human hope? In this engaging and curious look at spiritualism, specifically at Camp Etna in Maine, Ptacin beautifully brings the history and the characters of the camp alive.
Do you still have the hots for Tim Riggins? Did you or do you still worship at the altar of Winona Ryder? In this short story collection from local author Leesa Cross-Smith, the hearts of girls and women are caught in moments of obsessive desire and fantasy, wildness and bad behavior, brokenness and fearlessness. These forty-two short stories beat with a tremendous amount of heart, written by a woman described by award-winning author Roxane Gay as "a consummate storyteller."
I love her and you will too.
Khakpour is not one to shy away from controversy. In this new collection, she writes of the personal and socio-political while tackling the erasure of race in America. A beautifully rendered essay collection that is not to be missed in 2020.
As a woman from the frontlines of '70s LA bohemia, Babitz writes with a voluptuous confidence that makes you want to be her best friend. Her writing is sharp, funny, and daringly witty.
Leslie Jamison's new collection of essays is a mesmerizing hybrid of journalism, memoir, and criticism. As one of my literary heros Jamison has solidified her status as the definitive chronicler of human connection and the beauty of mundanity. For fans of Joan Didion, but with a more modern and less smug approach.
In a quiet meditation on love and grief, local author Cross-Smith tells the story of the lives of three friends and how to go on living after a tragedy. Her debut novel is a slow and beautiful burn that will make your heart skip a beat.
A honest and beautifully written memoir about living with a chronic illness. Beyond this, it's a remarkable story about living through trauma, toxic relationships and addiction that will remind the reader about the value of empathy.
Written by one of my favorite leaders of the modern feminist movement, Roxane Gay's "Hunger" is a brutally honest account about living in her body. The simplicity of her langauge as well as the straightforwardness of her storytelling make the reader feel as though they are sitting across the table from a close friend. For Gay, writing about personal issues like sexual assault and overeating means being able to take up space and to use that space in order to help lead to more understanding.
Eve Babitz may not be a household name but for anyone interested in what it was like to live in Los Angeles and Hollywood in the '60s and '70s this book is a must read. Party girl, artist, muse and writer, I immediately became obsessed with Eve and ordered two of her own books. Friends with Joan Didion and an "It Girl" of Hollywood, Babitz's writing has often been overlooked. She left me hungry for more.