Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1768)

COMMON CLAY by Brian W. Aldiss
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 7, 1996

"Not to every taste, perhaps, but thoughtful and subtle, conveying the unnerving sense that there's always something else going on just beyond the reader's immediate apprehension."
The latest collection from British grandmaster Aldiss (A Tupolev Too Far, 1994, etc.) includes six original stories among the reprints, 198795, the whole being knitted together with unsettling fictional-autobiographical musings and others comments. Read full book review >
LAST ACT IN PALMYRA by Lindsey Davis
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 6, 1996

"For others: a long, dull journey."
It's a.d. 72 and once again detective-informer Marcus Didius Falco (The Iron Hand of Mars, 1993, etc.) undertakes a mission— this time for Emperor Vespasian's spymaster Anacrites—to gather information on the land of Nabatea, which Rome has ideas of annexing. Read full book review >

I IS ANOTHER by Elisabeth Russell Taylor
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 6, 1996

London-based Taylor (Pillion Riders, etc., not reviewed) offers a short tale moralistic in its thrust, philosophic in its tone—and of declining interest as it goes on, and on. Read full book review >
STRESS by Loren D. Estleman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 5, 1996

New Year's Eve, 1972. Read full book review >
THE WOMAN WHO WALKED ON WATER by Lily Tuck
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 5, 1996

"An exquisite, gem-like treatise on the nature of illumination- -a case study of metamorphosis."
Mesmerizing in its simplicity, this second novel from Tuck (Interviewing Matisse, or, the Woman Who Died Standing Up, 1991) lyrically traces one woman's search for spiritual enlightenment and self-fulfillment—or at least for a life away from suburban Connecticut. Read full book review >

A WHITE MERC WITH FINS by James Hawes
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 4, 1996

"Good to the last drop."
From first-time author Hawes, one of the most endearingly caustic—yet still deftly sincere—novels to come out of Britain since Martin Amis's The Rachel Papers. Read full book review >
GUILTY AS SIN by Tami Hoag
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

"Worthy, but much less fun."
No more meeting-cute for romancer Hoag. Read full book review >
LONESOME STANDARD TIME by Dana Andrew Jennings
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

A backwoods village becomes hell on earth in Jennings's (Mosquito Games, 1989, Women of Granite, 1992) newest heavy-handed saga of bleak prospects and endlessly battered souls in up-country New Hampshire. Read full book review >
BETWEEN SISTERS by Nina Vida
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

"Still, Lela is a strong woman more appealing than most."
A horrific if dizzyingly paced second novel from the author of Goodbye, Saigon (1994), this about a young woman's struggle to deal with the rage and sexual abuse that destroyed her family and indelibly scarred her. Read full book review >
THE SERPENT GARDEN by Judith Merkle Riley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

"Spooky, riotous, headlong action; ivory-clear satires of power-players; a spot of comic grue, enticing period ambiance, and prose alluringly luminous: a top-notch re-creation."
A new and enchanting Riley period masque, featuring an innocent heroine who escapes the snares of the 16th-century Mighty: royal heavies; their beady-eyed minions; lethal conquistadors; even a released demon, dank, smelly, smoking from the ears, and a bibulous angel. Read full book review >
BURNING YOUR BOATS by Angela Carter
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

"A book of wonders, then, even if too cloying for some tastes- -and a welcome occasion for reassessing the work of one of the most unusual writers of recent emergence."
Historical events and personages viewed as in a distorting mirror, and beasts of prey endangered by encounters with their chosen quarry, are representative of the charmingly deranged fiction of the late Carter (194093). Read full book review >
THE TEARS OF THE MADONNA by George Herman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 1, 1996

"A delight in what we hope will be an ongoing series."
In the second of a series (begun with A Comedy of Murders, 1994), the setting is once again Renaissance Italy and the sleuths are Leonardo da Vinci and his more than worthy sidekick, the learned dwarf Niccolo. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >