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A simultaneously bewildering and compelling body of work.

An eerie and uncanny collection of essays.

“I gathered secrets like little pieces of survival, and I was so healthy,” writes Hodson early on in the first essay of her debut collection. From the very beginning, the author sets up the tone of the book, which feels crystalized in time and space, oscillating between intoxicating and alienating, exciting and dull, genuine and contrived. Much of this collection of essays feels more related to fiction than nonfiction. The author’s word choices capture entire worlds and emotional landscapes, so much so that readers might wonder whether she is indulging in autofiction. However, this is not a disservice to the book, which is filled with enough tangible instances of lived experience to capture reader attention. She shares unusual tips for modeling, one of her previous jobs: “I narrowed it down to one trick, one simple, private action: think of someone you want to touch whom you cannot touch, someone forbidden. Think of a room where there is nothing except the two of you: still, you cannot touch them. Think of the electricity between two hands about to touch, the language that exists in that silence. Now, turn the camera into the face of the beloved and tell it everything.” Hodson’s language magnetizes and begs for attention without ever feeling overly needy. The author effectively meditates on the development of the self in a highly material world and on the function of female bodies in a society that systematically objectifies and commodifies them. “If I’m sold as an object,” she writes, “then I’m no longer a threat. My mind spoken for, contained, no one waiting for proof, my body no longer my own.” Such pointed observations pop up throughout the book, occasionally causing disorientation but successfully keeping readers longing for explanations, keeping the pages turning.

A simultaneously bewildering and compelling body of work.

Pub Date: June 5, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-250-17019-4

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: April 2, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2018

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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