My Father, Dancing

Bliss Broyard’s collection of short stories, My Father, Dancing, is so splendidly nuanced that one is tempted to overstate the book’s low-keyed charms. In this era of blockbuster bestsellers and publishing "sensations," the small pleasures of Broyard’s stories are to be savored. The collection is dedicated "in memory of  ...

Need My Sugar – Kim Nalley

Kim Nalley has been a fixture on the San Francisco music scene for the best part of a decade and with this album, her sophomore release, looks set to increase her profile significantly in both her native US and Europe. In a world where any number of pretty young  ...

Narralogues: Truth in Fiction – Ronald Sukenick

Ronald Sukenick is one of the leading lights of postmodern literature in the United States. He was a founding member of the Fiction Collective, a famed alternative press started in 1974 and still thriving. His first novel was published in 1968. Since then, in over a dozen works, he’s  ...

Novel with Cocaine – M. Ageyev

Novel with Cocaine is narrated by a young Russian hedonist living in Moscow during the tumultuous years of 1916 to 1919. As the country plunges deeper into the First World War, Vadim Maslennikov plunges instead into prostitutes. When the Communist Revolution begins to unfold, Vadim prefers to unfold packets  ...

One Market Under God – Thomas Frank

Once Americans imagined that economic democracy meant a reasonable standard of living for all, that freedom was only meaningful once poverty and powerlessness had been overcome. Today, however, American opinion leaders seem generally convinced that democracy and the free market are simply identical. There is precious little that is  ...

The Big Black – Orange Goblin

First things first: this album's title, The Big Black, has absolutely nothing to do with Steve Albini's noise- and rage-fueled mid-80s pummeling device. No covers of "Jordan, Minnesota" here, sorry. Orange Goblin is a stoner metal band, with no pretensions towards anything deeper than rocking out, and every once  ...

Ravelstein – Saul Bellow

Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised that Saul Bellow at 84 has written a novel as graceful and funny as Ravelstein. But who could have predicted that he would also stir up a hornets’ nest of controversy? The character of Abe Ravelstein is based on Bellow’s late friend and colleague,  ...