Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1809)

PHOTOGRAPHING FAIRIES by Steve Szilagyi
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"The farrago of Twenties setting, Victorian plotting, folkloric conventions, and postmodern twitting of same makes this a curiosity most likely to appeal to readers willing to suspend several sorts of disbelief at once."
Do you believe in fairies? Read full book review >
NEGROPHOBIA by Darius James
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"James's raucous debut is by far the best novel to emerge from New York's Lower East Side literary scene."
Every racial stereotype about black people comes to boisterous, blistering life in this outrageous first novel—a grand guignol comic book that draws from both racist kitsch and Afro- American high culture. Read full book review >

KAGAMI by Elizabeth Kata
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"Good summer reading."
An evocative, sweeping epic of a Japanese family—from the end of that country's self-imposed isolation in the mid-19th century to its devastating earthquake of 1923—by Australian native Kata (The Death of Ruth, 1982, etc.), who lived in Tokyo for decades. Read full book review >
MRS. VARGAS AND THE DEAD NATURALIST by Kathleen Alcala
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"An intensely imaginative, often compelling debut."
Fantasies abound in this first story collection from Seattle- based Alcal†, who moves as subtly across the border between the US and Mexico as between the real and surreal, probing desperate lives of women under duress, and their dubious refuge of dreams. Read full book review >
THE DEVIL'S DREAM by Lee Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"A real treat- -and an education."
A thoroughly entertaining eighth novel from Smith (Fair and Tender Ladies, 1988, etc.) traces the roots of an extended, country-western ``singing'' family from 1830's hollow to contemporary Nashville. Read full book review >

THE JOKE by Milan Kundera
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"Buy someone's first novel instead."
Shades of the Rocky movies: This is English translation number five of Kundera's 1967 novel. Read full book review >
THE BIG HYPE by Avery Corman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"But hype will help."
Entertaining but far from caustic satire on celebrityhood that finds Corman (Prized Possessions, 1991, etc.) having fun with publishing and show biz. Read full book review >
COUNT GEIGER'S BLUES by Michael Bishop
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"Witty, often admirable work but with a hidden agenda that grates."
Another distinctive fantasy featuring a dying protagonist (as in Unicorn Mountain, 1988), this one set in the mythical southern state of Oconee and its largest city, Salonika. Read full book review >
EYE OF THE HAWK by David William Ross
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"Still, it's a good read and well-written, often with the touch of a romance writer."
A western soap-opera that spans 23 years and moves from the brink of one disaster to another, related by an omniscient narrator, who tends to editorialize. Read full book review >
LOOKING FOR LEO by Gloria Nagy
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"As usual, Nagy is smart-alecky-funny and compassionate, but her plot is on uppers—which is what keeps this novel from appealing on all levels."
A busy, emotional sixth novel by Nagy (A House in the Hamptons, etc.) that does battle with the same theme as Olivia Goldsmith's The First Wives Club, takes it a little further and deeper, but still gets tripped up in its ridiculous plot. Read full book review >
EASY KEEPER by Mary Tannen
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1992

"Pleasant but not memorable."
Literature ``lite'' from Tannen (Second Sight, 1988; After Roy, 1989), who writes stylishly about the angst of the superficially substantial in the kind of western setting easterners like to think authentic. Read full book review >
POSSESSING THE SECRET OF JOY by Alice Walker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: June 30, 1992

"Female circumcision is a terrible travesty, but neither it nor Walker's talent is well served by this overwrought novel."
Here and there tantalizing remnants of the writing that made The Color Purple such a critical success, but for the most part Walker's latest is held hostage to an agenda—the eradication of female circumcision in Africa and the Middle East—a cause to which she will be contributing a portion of the royalties. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Luis Alberto Urrea
April 21, 2015

Examining the borders between one nation and another, between one person and another, Luis Alberto Urrea’s latest story collection, The Water Museum, reveals his mastery of the short form. This collection includes the Edgar-award winning "Amapola" and his now-classic "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses," which had the honor of being chosen for NPR's "Selected Shorts" not once but twice. Urrea has also recently published a poetry collection, Tijuana Book of the Dead, mixing lyricism and colloquial voices, mysticism and the daily grind. We talk to Urrea about both of his new books this week on Kirkus TV. View video >