SPRING 2021

Check back as we add more features and reviews in the next months!

INTERVIEWS

Homage to the Beats: An Interview with Gerald Nicosia
Nicosia’s Beat Scrapbook provides powerful portraits of a wide range of Beats, many of them touchstones for both a social and literary revolution.
Interviewed by Lawrence Welsh

The Likely World: An Interview with Melanie Conroy-Goldman
Conroy-Goldman discusses her new novel that delves into not only Jewish identity, but also addiction, motherhood, memory, attraction, and more through the single mother protagonist Mellie.
Interviewed by Zhanna Slor

“This Anxious Present”: An Interview with Ben Ehrenreich
Journalist and novelist Ben Ehrenreich’s newest book, Desert Notebooks: A Road Map for the End of Time challenges readers to take a side as we stand anxiously between erasures of the past and the uncertainties of the future.
Interviewed by Benjamin P. Davis

The Productive Procrastination of Robert Stone: An Interview with Madison Smartt Bell
Acclaimed novelist Madison Smartt Bell discusses his definitive biography of the National Book Award winning author Robert Stone, highlighting key aspects of the author’s work and life along the way.
Interviewed by Allan Vorda

FEATURES

Are Translators Ventriloquists? On Reviewing Literary Translations
Let's explore the promises and pitfalls of describing translators (often ignored in reviews of translated works) as ventriloquists—at first it makes sense, then the metaphor goes very strange.
By Eric Fishman

Remembering Clayton Eshleman
By Pierre Joris
We commemorate the passing of poet and translator Clayton Eshleman with an obituary written by fellow traveler Pierre Joris, along with links to writing about Eshleman and an invitation to readers to send their own thoughts about this influential writer.

Pandemic Reflection: Patrick White’s Riders in the Chariot
by Kiran Bhat
Having been stranded in Australia during the pandemic lockdown, Kiran Bhat describes how the pause on travel led him to journey into the country’s literature instead, starting with its sole Nobel laureate.

COMICS REVIEWS

The Magic Fish
Trung Le Nguyen
The Magic Fish is a graphic novel of surpassing, sweet, credible beauty, at once realistic in its treatment of human emotions and out-of-this-world in terms of what readers can see. Reviewed by Stephanie Burt

POETRY REVIEWS:

What This Breathing
Laura Elrick
The space of Elrick’s new collection of poems is one of multiple overlapping disasters through which we navigate. Reviewed by David Brazil

When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through: A Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry
Edited by Joy Harjo, LeAnne Howe, and Jennifer Elise Foerster
This brilliant book edited by U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo and a stellar cast of supporting editors, and containing the work of 161 poets from more than ninety Native Nations, continues the hard labor of dispelling the myth of the vanishing indigenous race. Reviewed by Mike Dillon

vagrant (one) in thin air
Karen Garthe
Every page of this avant-garde collaboration between poet Karen Garthe and collagist Tod Thilleman is a surprise, taking readers to visual, intellectual, and emotional extremes in innovative ways. Reviewed by Lawrence R. Smith

Rough Song
Blanca Varela
Peruvian poet Blanca Varela was well-respected among an auspicious group of writers, including Octavio Paz and Jean-Paul Sartre; we can now see why in her first collection of poems to be translated into English. Reviewed by John Bradley

YA FICTION

Music From Another World
Robin Talley
In this novel, set during the summer of 1977, two closeted lesbians find friendship and a way to be their genuine selves despite conservative upbringings. Reviewed by Helena Ducusin

FICTION REVIEWS:

The Island Child
Molly Aitken
Molly Aitken’s first novel takes readers to a barren, conservative Irish island in the 1980s, where only America lies beyond the horizon. Reviewed by Jane Ainslie

A Certain Hunger
Chelsea G. Summers
The food critic-turned-murderer of A Certain Hunger—a Hannibal Lecter for our time—subverts the cannibal killer narrative with a feminist, 21st-century twist. Reviewed by Eleanor Stern

Tiny
Mairead Case
Tiny is less a retelling of Sophocles’s Antigone than it is an exploration of how the story’s motifs—war, grief, and power—play out in a life that insists on exceeding its traditional narrative. Reviewed by Evelyn Hampton

Winter Counts
David Heska Wanbli Weiden
A stunning crime novel, Winter Counts offers a fascinating snapshot of life and Lakota culture on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Reviewed by Julia Stein

NONFICTION REVIEWS

Brick City Vanguard: Amiri Baraka, Black Music, Black Modernity
James Smethurst
Baraka scholar James Smethurst cogently charts a clear path through the center of Baraka’s poetics, exploring the intricacies tying his personal development with the larger political as well as social shifts (particularly via Black music) taking place across his lifetime. Reviewed by Patrick James Dunagan

Dance We Do: A Poet Explores Black Dance
Ntozake Shange
Ntozake Shange’s celebration of Black dance history, community, and mentorship is as joyful and complex as its author. Reviewed by Christopher Luna

Coolidge & Cherkovski in Conversation
Clark Coolidge and Neeli Cherkovski
Edited by Kyle Harvey
Swapping stories and memories, ranging across topics and poetic encounters from the 1960s to the present, this transcribed conversational collage between two poets offers a fascinating look into their creative lives. Reviewed by Matt Hill

ART REVIEWS

Hommage à Moï Ver / The Ghetto Lane in Wilna: 65 Pictures
Sigutė Chlebinskaitė, Mindaugas Kvietkauskas, and Nissan N. Perez, eds.
This new English-Hebrew facsimile edition of The Ghetto Lane in Wilna, a masterpiece of book art from 1931, includes a companion paperback of bilingual essays, providing essential documentation of dying Jewish cultures. Reviewed by M. Kasper

The Sculpture Of Ruth Asawa: Contours in the Air
Edited by Timothy Anglin Burgard and Daniell Cornell
This robust gathering of essays, including several newly added to this edition, is a definitive collection of material on and about a renowned San Francisco sculptor. Reviewed by Patrick James Dunagan

Rain Taxi Online Edition Spring 2021 | © Rain Taxi, Inc. 2021