Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1743)

FILTH by Irvine Welsh
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"One wonders if he has written himself out."
The third and most willfully irreverent novel yet from Scotland's answer to William Burroughs, Hubert Selby Jr., and, arguably, Howard Stern. Read full book review >
THE FISHERMAN'S SON by Michael Köepf
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"A perfect fictional counterpart to The Perfect Storm: pithy scenes, a fine visual style, and artfully woven life stories."
A lyrical if sometimes brutal first novel about a boy's apprenticeship to his hard-luck fisherman father on California's northern coast, from a former professional fisherman and current screenwriter for Steven Spielberg's Dreamworks. Read full book review >

SALT WATER by Charles Simmons
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"A little saga of adolescence that, even if not new, is a perfectly-cut gem of its kind."
Simmons (Wrinkles, 1978; The Belles Lettres Papers, 1987) reappears with a small, coherent, impeccably composed little tragicomedy whose only debility is that the ground it stakes out is well-worn. Read full book review >
THE RESTRAINT OF BEASTS by Magnus Mills
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"All the same, a strongly imagined and more than promising first effort."
The hopeless task of disciplining two unruly slackers (which is just one of its clever title's implied meanings) gives substance—and allegorical form—to this flinty first novel by a British writer whose grim humor has been compared to that of Irvine Welsh. Read full book review >
THE VOYAGE OF THE NARWHAL by Andrea Barrett
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"You feel she could do full justice to it, or indeed whatever subject she chooses. (Author tour)"
Barrett's impeccably researched and stunningly written tale of a star-crossed Arctic voyage—a logical successor to such earlier fiction as The Forms of Water (1993) and the National Book Award—winning Ship Fever—is, simply, one of the best novels of the decade. Read full book review >

GHOST TOWN by Robert Coover
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"An adult western, in all, from a grand master of the hyperbolic surreal."
Hyper-parodist and gifted wordsmith Coover (Gerald's Party, 1986; A Night at the Movies, 1987; etc., etc.) strikes again, taking on the chaps, six-guns, and saloons of a mythic Wild West with an intensity sometimes tedious but brilliant on the whole. Read full book review >
COLLECTED FICTIONS by Jorge Luis Borges
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"Authoritative testimony to the virtues of eclecticism and cosmopolitanism, and a matchless gift to readers that belongs, as the old saying goes, in every library. (First serial to The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, and Grand Street)"
Mirrors, labyrinths, libraries, gardens, doppelgÑngers, knife fights, and tigers recur memorably in these witty, colorful tales—which have exerted an incalculable influence on the past half-century's fiction. Read full book review >
BIRDS OF AMERICA by Lorrie Moore
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"She's an original, and she's getting better with every book."
A fine new collection of 12 stories notable for their verbal wit and range of intellectual reference—the third such from the highly praised author of Who Will Run the Frog Hospital? (1994) and Like Life (1990). Read full book review >
FATHER OF LIES by Brian Evenson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"An investigation of the perverse that, however impassioned in aim or zealous in its own message, remains distractingly cartoon-like and thin."
Storywriter Evenson (Altmann's Tongue, 1994) makes his novel debut with a timely, readable, but debilitatingly stiff exploration of hypocrisy and religious zeal. Read full book review >
CLOSED IN SILENCE by Joan M. Drury
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"Not so much a whodunit, then, as a what-if-she-did-do-it, with the mystery used to dramatize debates whose outcome is never in doubt."
Twenty years after their college graduation, six women meet on a tiny island in Puget Sound for an informal reunion. Read full book review >
SHIMMER by Sarah Schulman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"Agitprop, pure and simple: The physical details of the period are nicely evoked, but the story itself is more a crude rant than a perceptive reprise of an era."
A pretentious lefty fairy tale of postwar New York by philosophe-novelist Schulman (Rat Bohemia, 1995, etc.), who tries—with a lot of cultural name-dropping and the usual references to Joseph McCarthy—to introduce us to an era and place that we have met many times already. Read full book review >
BLAST FROM THE PAST by Kinky Friedman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1998

"Fully the equal of Road Kill (1997), though, as usual with Kinky, the hardest thing to detect is the plot."
After ten inimitably ribald adventures, it's about time that rocker/raconteur Friedman served up an account of how he became a shamus in the first place, and so his magic carpet takes us back to 1979. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Andrea Beaty
August 30, 2016

In Andrea Beaty and David Roberts’ new picture book Ada Twist, Scientist is like her classmates, builder Iggy and inventor Rosie: scientist Ada, a character of color, has a boundless imagination and has always been hopelessly curious. Why are there pointy things stuck to a rose? Why are there hairs growing inside your nose? When her house fills with a horrific, toe-curling smell, Ada knows it’s up to her to find the source. Not afraid of failure, she embarks on a fact-finding mission and conducts scientific experiments, all in the name of discovery. But this time, her experiments lead to even more stink and get her into trouble! Inspired by real-life makers such as Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie, Ada Twist, Scientist champions girl power and women scientists, and brings welcome diversity to picture books about girls in science. “Cool and stylish,” our reviewer writes. View video >