Category: Reviews

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Review: Not Even Laughter by Phillip Crymble

by Lorraine York

From Salmon Poetry and the lovely Cliffs of Moher in County Clare, Ireland, comes Phillip Crymble’s first full-scale collection Not Even Laughter. Crymble, born in Belfast, a teacher for many years at the University of Michigan, and now based in New Brunswick, has published many of these poems in Canada (Arc,

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The Poetical is Political and the Books are Burning: Reviewing Adrienne Rich, Present Tense, and Speech Actions

by Kailey Havelock

During the 2016 American election, I watched the results come in through a Twitter feed dominated by writers. It somehow felt more real to read reactions rather than the news itself, as if none of us were alone as we processed this ubiquitous confrontation with reality.

Tony Kushner states in the preface to a reprinting of Angels in America,

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Literature Without a Face: A Review of Stephen Thomas’ The Jokes

by Angus MacCaull

“I want to do something worthwhile with my life.” This is the line that closes “Taken,” the first story in Stephen Thomas’ debut collection of flash fiction, The Jokes. In this opening piece, the narrator is watching a Liam Neeson movie on a Friday afternoon,

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The Vivid Inner Life of Julieta

by Paula Razuri

I turned to Pedro Almodóvar’s Volver as a way to return to reality after finishing a large project on themes of motherhood and authorship in Alice Munro and Elena Ferrante. Tired from having given up so much energy on the project, I expected to be comforted by Spanish-speaking voices,

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Making Space: A Review of Erin Wunker’s Notes from a Feminist Killjoy

by Kathryn Stagg

I started reading Notes from a Feminist Killjoy the day after the UBC Accountable letter was published. Only a few days had passed since the US elections and I, like many, was feeling distressed. With the publication of the letter, I felt both fragile and hardened at once; about to break and moulded into something hard and unforgiving.

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Under the Ash Cloud: A Review of Amina Gautier’s The Loss of All Lost Things

by Kasia Juno

The reclining grey figure on the cover of Amina Gautier’s award-winning collection of short stories The Loss of All Lost Things is immediately recognizable. I have met him before, in a dimly lit rectangular room in the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Montreal. He belongs to a buried city, to a city that lost everything.

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Writing in Public

by Jason Freure

“Personally, I think it’s pretentious to write in public.” Warren Dunford wrote this line in his 1998 novel, Soon To Be a Major Motion Picture, about the kids scribbling away at their screenplays in the Annex’s Future Bakery. Dunford was either blessed not to have roommates or he had a very strict idea of what people did in public.

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Review: Pearl Pirie’s An Ongoing Lack of Spontaneous Combustion

by Aaron Boothby

Pearl Pirie is concerned with vectors, disruption, iridescence, and combustion, and using them to unsettle seemingly settled things. Ignore for a moment that the title suggests a disappointment in not spontaneously combusting. Motion is a position, as in the poem “We Casually Toss Around our Rucksacks” where “all we have is looser than clouds.

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The Steel Chisel: Carving Out a Name

by Chris Johnson

The Steel Chisel was an online literary magazine and chapbook publisher that released its first digital issue in March 2013, and published new poetry and fiction monthly until this past April, 2016. The magazine, published and edited by David Emery, featured contemporary writers at various stages of their careers and finely walked the high-wire of promoting the publisher’s friends in the Ottawa writing community while also publishing new and unique voices in Canadian poetry.

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Lolita in Neon Demon

by Dana Ewachow

The movie Neon Demon is being slammed for being provocative, exploitative, and even repulsive. It was booed at the Cannes film festival and has had its fair share of bad reviews. The film is about Jesse (played by Elle Fanning), a 16-year-old girl who moves to LA in hopes of becoming a model.