Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘Pantheon’

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First Looks, April 2013

Hello again, FWR friends. Welcome to the latest installment of “First Looks,” which highlights soon-to-be (or just) released books that have piqued our interest as readers-who-write. We publish “First Looks” here on the FWR blog around the 15th of each month, and as always, we’d love to hear your comments and your recommendations of forthcoming titles. So please drop us a line with buzz-worthy titles you’re anticipating: editors(at)fictionwritersreview(dot)com. Thanks in advance! Perhaps I’m biased because I teach Midwestern Lit courses and classes on Rust Belt Narratives, but Brian Kimberling‘s debut novel, Snapper, which Pantheon is releasing next week, and which […]

Reviews |

Nothing but a Smile, by Steve Amick

Steve Amick’s superb second novel, Nothing But a Smile (Pantheon, 2009), opens in June of 1944, with Winton (“Wink”) S. Dutton, a promising young cartoonist in civilian life, walking the streets of Chicago. Wink is home from the war early, his drawing hand having been mangled when, hung-over while doing an assignment for Yank Magazine, he misheard an ensign’s instructions and touched a submarine flywheel that he should have simply drawn. But prior to shipping back home, Wink had promised his buddy, Bill (“Chesty”) Chesterton, to look up his wife, Sal, in Chicago, so he might tell her how faithful Chesty has been to her, and how much he loves her. And right away, Amick has readers worrying over their meeting; the bleached bones of an affair have been set out in a row…

Reviews |

The First Person and Other Stories, by Ali Smith

The dozen stories in The First Person, Ali Smith’s latest collection, are deceptively simple: no verbal pyrotechnics, no otherworldly setting, no last-minute epiphanies, and most of the time, no traditional rising action or climax. They’re told in a simple, conversational tone, often by a narrator who could be Ali Smith herself. But they stay with you long after you’ve finished reading them. They sneak up on you, camouflaged as innocuous little anecdotes about innocuous little interactions and misunderstandings, and only later do you realize they’re asking the most fundamental questions that fiction, or life itself, can ask.