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NEW REVIEW HIGHLIGHTS!!

 

SPD is proud to celebrate recent titles that have drawn critical praise & attention! We've gathered some of our favorite recent review highlights and will compile that buzz for you here regularly.  Publishers & authors: if you've got a new review you'd like considered for our highlights, please send it to publicity@spdbooks.org!
 
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Savage Pageant By Jessica Q. Stark | Birds, LLC, 2020
Savage Pageant By Jessica Q. Stark | Birds, LLC, 2020
"Savage Pageant, like the site of Jungleland, rewards a careful reader. There are fingerprints and all sorts of bits of hair and fur and blood throughout, linking poem to poem to image to map. To your latest lunch, of course."

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Jessica Q. Stark

Eco Theo Review | September 2, 2020

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 The White Dress By Nathalie Leger | Dorothy, a publishing project, 2020
 The White Dress By Nathalie Leger I Dorothy, a publishing project, 2020
" Léger lingers with the performance artist’s desire to mend something that was out of proportion in the world — and her ultimate failure to do so."

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Clancey D’Isa

Chicago Review of Books
| September 15, 2020
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Paper Bells By Phan Nhien Hao, Hai-Dang Phan (Translator) | The Song Cave, 2020
Paper Bells By Phan Nhien Hao, Hai-Dang Phan (Translator) I The Song Cave, 2020 "Phan Nhiên Hạo’s poetry, even at its most hopeless, believes in a history that can be remembered justly, and Hai-Dang Phan, giving his words an additional life in English, proves that hope right. "

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Clara Altfeld

Kenyon Review
|
September 1, 2020
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Katabasis By Lucia Estrada, Olivia Lott (Translator)  |  Eulalia Books, 2020
Katabasis By Lucia Estrada, Olivia Lott (Translator)  |  Eulalia Books, 2020
"Written amidst “the complexities of conflict, crisis, and reconciliation” in contemporary Colombia, Estrada’s poems embody the struggle of deep elemental forces. Full of mythic and religious references, they’re at home in the abstract."

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Kelsi Vanada

Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Home Sickness By Chih-Ying Lay, Darryl Sterk (Translator) |  Linda Leith Publishing, 2020
Home Sickness By Chih-Ying Lay, Darryl Sterk (Translator) |  Linda Leith Publishing, 2020
"Lay is showing us this tension between a desire for home and the reality that a person's experience of home might be a sick place.


The Globe and Mail | August 13th, 2020
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Everything and Other Poems By Charles North | Song Cave, 2020
Everything and Other Poems By Charles North | Song Cave, 2020
"There is nothing arid about North’s poetry. Although he asserts that “Everything exists / inside a giant thought balloon,” the image itself represents the humorous tone he often employs to lighten the thought. There is “air outside the balloon,” a kind of nothing, that keeps it afloat. There is also a line of feeling, which may be invisible, but nevertheless keeps the balloon from simply flying away."

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Terence Diggory

Kenyon Review | August 13, 2020



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Fugitive Assemblage By Jennifer Calkins | The 3rd Thing, 2020
Fugitive Assemblage By Jennifer Calkins |  The 3rd Thing, 2020

"What literature such as Fugitive Assemblage offers us during our current crisis is a moment to break away from the individualist ideology that we, in the United States, have absorbed, a chance to practice a type of plurality that helps us hold a multitude of painful and often contradictory truths at once. Or, at the very least, it shows us how to expand and connect, to be utterly open to the urgency of that possibility. In so doing, we might feel less alone."

-Alissa Hattman

Big Other | August 25, 2020

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The Wanting Was a Wilderness By Alden Jones |  Fiction Advocate, 2020
The Wanting Was a Wilderness: Cheryl Strayed's WILD and the Art of Memoir By Alden Jones |  Fiction Advocate, 2020
"The Wanting Was a Wilderness alternates between craft and personal narrative until the penultimate chapters of false endings, where Jones arrives at the thing she has been seeking to both prove and reveal: her truth."

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Lindsay Maher


Entropy | September 20, 2020
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afterKleist By Matthew Fink |  selva oscura press, 2018
afterKleist By Matthew Fink |  selva oscura press, 2018
" Reading his work is just what poetry should be: Fun, endearing, full of delight in new knowledge given forth in unexpected manner. It is a most welcome joy to share in his endeavor."

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J Peter Moore


hyperallergic | August 22, 2020
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Reaching Light: Selected Poems By Robert Adamson, Devin Johnston (Editor) | Flood Editions, 2020
Reaching Light: Selected Poems By Robert Adamson, Devin Johnston (Editor) | Flood Editions, 2020
"The Wanting Was a Wilderness alternates between craft and personal narrative until the penultimate chapters of false endings, where Jones arrives at the thing she has been seeking to both prove and reveal: her truth."

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Patrick James Dunagan


Entropy | September 20, 2020
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Little Hill By Alli Warren | City Lights Publishers, 2020
Little Hill By Alli Warren | City Lights Publishers, 2020
"Is this attitude towards, or relationship with, the dead, an adequate opposite to the violence-inducing fear of death? Or is it the kind of necromancy that runs away from life and love? Is it still a refusal to let the mystery be? Or is the alliterative beautiful bleeding both/and meadow but fragile cover of the everyday violence of the cruel self-satisfied?"

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Chris Stroffolino


Entropy | September 10, 2020
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Phone Bells Keep Ringing for Me By Choi Seungja, Won-Chung Kim (Translator) Cathy Park Hong (Translator) |  Action Books, 2020
Phone Bells Keep Ringing for Me By Choi Seungja, Won-Chung Kim (Translator) Cathy Park Hong (Translator) |  Action Books, 2020
"Many of Choi’s poems are lonely, the loneliness that comes with living, sure, but also the loneliness of waking each morning to be yoked by capitalism and knowledge of inevitable death."

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Zoe Contros Kearl 


Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Pixel Flesh By Agustin Fernandez Mallo, Zachary Rockwell Ludington (Translator) | Cardboard House Press, 2020
Pixel Flesh By Agustin Fernandez Mallo Zachary Rockwell Ludington (Translator) |  Cardboard House Press, 2020
" Ludington’s translation, through its verbal re-presentation of Mallo’s circling poetics, effectively intensifies Mallo’s project, demonstrating a generative absence beyond memory and beyond language. Everything is unsettled; from this site of unsettledness, where even language is without center, Ludington translates around the impossibility of grasping absence. "

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AM Ringwalt


Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Agadir By Mohammed Khair-Eddine , Pierre Joris (Translator) Jake Syersak (Translator) | Dialogos / Lavender Ink, 2020
Agadir By Mohammed Khair-Eddine , Pierre Joris (Translator) Jake Syersak (Translator) | Dialogos / Lavender Ink, 2020
"In Khaïr-Eddine’s telling of the earthquake’s aftermath, this singular event dislodges the ghosts of another slower-moving catastrophe: that of political repression. As the sediments of colonization and oppressive regimes are exhumed throughout the text, the figure of the monarch falls under the most scathing critique. "

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Phoebe Bay Carter


Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Rough Song By Blanca Varela Carlos Lara (Translator) | The Song Cave, 2020
Rough Song By Blanca Varela Carlos Lara (Translator) | The Song Cave, 2020
"At times deceptively simple, Rough Song is layered with abruptness, intensity, and—as Lara draws out in his inspired choice for the English title (Canto villano in Spanish)—a roughness that points to precision without perfection, rawness without sentimentality, compression without restraint."

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Olivia Lottl 


Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Yi Sang: Selected Works By Yi Sang | Wave Books, 2020
Yi Sang: Selected Works By Yi Sang | Wave Books, 2020
"This book is a rebellion against colonial violence. Carry it around under your shirt. Like a stethoscope, hold the cold mirror against your skin. A most welcome shield in these fiery times of protest."

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Paul Cunningham


Kenyon Review | September 1, 2020
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Terrain By Gina Hietpas | Blue Cactus Press, 2020
Terrain By Gina Hietpas | Blue Cactus Press, 2020
"Port Angeles poet Alice Derry, who worked with Hietpas’ manuscript, noted “The whole book works as a love poem.”"

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Michael Dashiell


Sequim Gazette | September 24, 2020
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Where Things Touch: A Meditation on Beauty By Bahar Orang |  Book*hug, 2020
Where Things Touch: A Meditation on Beauty By Bahar Orang |  Book*hug, 2020
"These parallels between beauty, art, and emotion are drawn throughout, forcing the reader to consider the ways in which so much of life, and expression, is merely an approximation, that some things are too big to be defined entirely. "

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Madeline Garfinkle 


Columbia Journal | September 27, 2020
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