Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1768)

FRESH BLOOD 2 by Mike Ripley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 6, 1998

"Altogether, a stronger collection than its in-your-face predecessor."
If they don't watch out, editors Ripley and Jakubowski, whose Fresh Blood (1997) seemed the anthology with something to offend everybody, will find themselves getting snapped up by old ladies of both sexes. Read full book review >
THE RICH MAN'S TABLE by Scott Spencer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 5, 1998

"A mournful, moving work."
"All I wanted was a father," Billy Rothschild explains, looking back at his fatherless childhood. Read full book review >

DREAMER by Charles Johnson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 4, 1998

"Johnson's in-your-face style seems all the more annoying for having led nowhere, and for having failed to produce any coherent vision of one of the great storylines in the epic of American history. (Author tour)"
A novel about Martin Luther King Jr. from the National Book Award-winning Johnson (Middle Passage, 1990, etc.), who continues with his strange combination of high-flown philosophy and down-home folksiness. Read full book review >
KALIMANTAAN by C.S. Godshalk
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 3, 1998

"Even so, Godshalk offers many moments of pure fire and beauty. (First printing of 50,000; author tour)"
Brilliantly colored but baggy debut about a 19th-century British adventurer, the eccentric figure who inspired Conrad's Lord Jim, and his kingdom on the north coast of Borneo. Read full book review >
THE ALL-TRUE TRAVELS AND ADVENTURES OF LIDIE NEWTON by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 3, 1998

"Little else goes awry, though, in the richly entertaining saga of a woman who might have been well matched with Thomas Berger's 'Little Big Man,' and whom Huck Finn would have been proud to claim as his big sister."
Smiley (Moo, 1995, etc.) scales another peak with this bighearted and thoughtful picaresque novel set mostly in the Kansas Territory shortly before the Civil War. Read full book review >

A THOUSAND WINGS by T.C. Huo
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 2, 1998

"An appealing debut that doesn't fully satisfy but does whet one's appetite for more of Huo's work."
It would be reductive, though not entirely unfair, to label this fitfully impressive first novel a gay Southeast Asian Like Water for Chocolate. Read full book review >
CAVEDWELLER by Dorothy Allison
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 2, 1998

An increasingly absorbing story of ``a family in pieces, pulling itself back together out of one woman's stubborn determination,'' by the author of the bestselling Bastard Out of Carolina (1992), a National Book Awardfinalist. Read full book review >
THIS SIDE OF BRIGHTNESS by Colum McCann
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 2, 1998

An ambitious, idiosyncratic, moving saga of immigrant life by Irish expatriate McCann (stories: Fishing the Sloe-black River, 1996; Songdogs, 1994, etc.). Read full book review >
PICO STREET STORIES by Kingsley Tufts
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 1998

"A charming assemblage of characters, in an inevitably dated and unsurprising collection."
In this posthumous compilation of stories, Tufts (1907—91) presents somewhat naive though likable vignettes of Mexican-American life in pre-WW II Los Angeles. Read full book review >
SWIMMING POOL SUNDAY by Madeleine Wickham
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 1998

"As before, Wickham is adept at creating a random mix of likable people, but the lack of substance and depth here makes it more guilty pleasure than literary treasure."
Once again, Wickham (A Desirable Residence, 1997, etc.) uses a favorite, and sometimes effective, formula: throw a large group of people together and see what mischief comes. Read full book review >
THE BAKER by Paul Hond
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 1998

"A bright Beaujolais of a book: fresh, optimistic, and sophisticated enough to satisfy on many levels."
A debut novel that transforms the terror of working-class, inner-city race relations into an upbeat examination of love, loss, and father-son bonding. Read full book review >
MURDER FOR REVENGE by Otto Penzler
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 1998

"More predictable, then, than the tales in Murder for Love (1996), though the level of professionalism is more consistent."
Once you're aware of the rubric the title announces—tit for tat—you know a lot about the plots of most of these dozen new stories, more than you would have known about the plots of the stories in Penzler's Murder for Love (1996), since the possibilities within these present confines are so well-worn. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jennifer Keishin Armstrong
author of SEINFELDIA
August 22, 2016

Jennifer Keishin Armstrong’s new bestseller Seinfeldia is the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of two guys who went out for coffee and dreamed up Seinfeld —the cultural sensation that changed television and bled into the real world. Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly 40 million Americans were tuning in weekly. In Seinfeldia, TV historian and entertainment writer Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant, a world where the Soup Nazi still spends his days saying “No soup for you!” “Armstrong’s intimate, breezy history is full of gossipy details, show trivia, and insights into how famous episodes came to be,” our reviewer writes. “Perfect for Seinfeldians and newcomers alike.” View video >