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Although they were at the height of their popularity during a defining period in my life, I never liked the band Nirvana. They always seemed a little...more
Jun 13, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary
It's difficult to be a writer of creative nonfiction and not have a range of feelings about David Sedaris. He is the giant in the field, the one who e...more
Oct 15, 2010
Oct 17, 2010
Patti LuPone: A Memoir
Only die-hard theater nerds will probably be interested in this memoir. I think I am eligible because I distinctly remember performing numbers from Lu...more
Oct 09, 2010
Oct 17, 2010
Almanac of the Dead
I read Leslie Marmon Silko's Almanac of the Dead for my "Big Books" class, and quickly realized that Silko's work definitely fit the description of a...more
Jun 11, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
The Thing About Life is That One Day You'll Be Dead
Shields book is packed with trivia and minutiae about what it means to be alive- and what it means to die. Some of these tidbits are interesting, but...more
Jul 30, 2008
Aug 07, 2008
Moby-Dick (Norton Critical Edition)
Although I've known it would be required reading for a hopeful future college-level English teacher, I've put off reading Moby-Dick for years. It was...more
May 18, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
Philip Roth has the ability to split a room, especially with his last few novels. I read this book in one sitting and I was thoroughly compelled- part...more
Dec 20, 2008
Dec 21, 2008
I have no interest in Victorian England. I know, I's the kind of comment that can get you killed in a graduate-level English program--or at...more
May 29, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
The Raw Shark Texts
I was not immediately charmed by this book, but after wading through the first few chapters, it took off and I read about 350 pages of it in one day.

May 17, 2008
May 01, 2008
Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession
Powell's prose has come a long way from the (oh-so-overrated) blogger-chic of _Julie and Julia_, but this memoir is full of troublesome moments. Her s...more
Jan 04, 2010
Mar 02, 2010
Eating Animals
Okay okay, I get it. I'm prone to hyperbole and glowing reviews and every song I ever like is the best song I've ever heard and so on and so forth.

I h...more
Nov 2009
Nov 01, 2009
The Trouble With Poetry - And Other Poems
A surprise "just because" gift from my friend Nathan, I read this book tonight in one sitting. I wanted to get out of the house, but no one was availa...more
Jun 13, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
City of Thieves
I have a hard time reviewing this book. It was a quick read, and one that was super enjoyable for the most part. I couldn't shake the feeling that it...more
Jun 29, 2009
Jun 29, 2009
Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination
A collection of three insightful lecture transcriptions that call us to focus our gaze upon the sensitive subject of race in America. Morrison asks wh...more
Jan 20, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
My Life
Many people, in my experience, will come up against this book (because you don't merely read it--you come up against it) and say that they find it imp...more
not set
Oct 17, 2010
The Book Thief
This was one of the strongest, most powerful books I've ever read.

It's the story of Liesel Meminger, a young girl who is taken by her mother to live...more
Jun 2007
May 26, 2007
Halls of Fame: Essays
I read these essays out of order for a class on experimental writing styles. I alternate back and forth between finding D'Agata one of the most unbear...more
Sep 2010
Oct 17, 2010
The Gaslight Effect: How to Spot and Survive the Hidden Manipulation Others Use to Control Your Life
I want everyone to like me all the time.

This, as we all know, is impossible. I stumbled across this book at the library. It was a quick read and a pow...more
Jul 27, 2008
Jul 23, 2008
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
This book took a long time for me to really become invested. In fact, I think I would give the first half of the book two stars. But once I grew accus...more
Jun 26, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
The Power Of Less: The Fine Art of Limiting Yourself to the Essential
This is a short book (as you would imagine), but it's full of really great life advice. As someone who loves stuff, this book challenged me and starte...more
Mar 2010
Mar 02, 2010
Case Histories
A fun book to read. A break from the heavy-ish stuff I've been reading lately. A mystery.

It was enjoyable enough that I read it in two short sittings....more
Jul 23, 2009
Jul 22, 2009
What I Talk About When I Talk About Running
I agree with most of the reviewers who say that this book is probably the most salient for running writers (and there are a lot of us, it seems like),...more
Jan 06, 2010
Mar 02, 2010
This is Where I Leave You
This was the first full book I read on my new Kindle, and I loved every second of it. Smart, funny, touching, deserves all these big, blurb...more
Feb 27, 2010
Mar 02, 2010
Great House
"We search for patterns, you see, only to find where the patterns break. And it's there, in that fissure, that we pitch our tents and wait."

Oct 18, 2010
Oct 17, 2010
Wind in a Box
This ink. This name. This blood. This blunder.
This blood. This loss. This lonesome wind. This canyon.

Beautiful poems from a gifted poet. Deep, heartb...more
Feb 17, 2009
May 07, 2009
Next Life
She's no Lyn Hejinian, but I don't think even Lyn Hejinian is Lyn Hejinian if you know what I mean. It's postmodern. Anyway, as far as L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E...more
Apr 20, 2009
May 07, 2009
"...its anger thrilling her now where it used to wear her out. Wear her out."

A 9-word review: Oppression robs us of our histories. Make it right.
Mar 17, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
A Mercy
"I am making me quiet but I am loose inside not knowing how to be."

A 9-word review: Beautifully brief look at the slaves we've never noticed.
Apr 21, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
The Bluest Eye
"Certain seeds it will not nurture, certain fruits it will not bear..."

A 9-word review: Buying into society's lies will surely leave us broken.
Jan 27, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
Song of Solomon
"If you surrendered to the air, you could ride it."

A 9-word review: When we fly from something, we fly to something.
Feb 17, 2009
Jun 12, 2009
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