Good Citizens Need Not Fear

by Maria Reva Good Citizens Need Not Fear is, succinctly, a collection of connected short stories, but a fuller description is a bit more complicated. Set in a small, late Soviet-era Ukrainian town, the stories build upon the previous ones and often bleed into the stories that follow, creating an ongoing narrative that showcases the…
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Ducks, Newburyport

by Lucy Ellmann I wish people would be a bit more careful with literary comparisons. I understand the desire to relate new stories to others that readers are more than likely familiar with in order to quickly pitch the book, but superficial comparisons that set readers up for the wrong impressions seem to be increasingly…
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The Parade

by Dave Eggers In The Parade, two foreign contractors are sent to an unnamed country to build a road from its poor south to the capital in the north, to be finished in time for a military parade in celebration of the end of years of civil war. The workers are sent in without identification,…
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The Testaments

by Margaret Atwood The Testaments, Atwood’s long awaited sequel to her famous The Handmaid’s Tale, sheds further light on Gilead––the United States in the near future, after its transformation into a Christian theocracy. The story is comprised of multiple viewpoints: a Canadian outsider, the daughter of one of Gilead’s elite, and one privy to its…
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The Wagers

by Sean Michaels In The Wagers, Theo Potiris believes in luck. He works at his family’s supermarket by day and does stand-up comedy at night, but he only performs a set if he wins a bet at the racetrack beforehand. Though he briefly saw some minor success with his comedy––receiving interview requests and performing on…
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Greenwood

by Michael Christie In the midst of the Great Depression in New Brunswick, Everett Greenwood lives simply in his tiny shack selling maple syrup harvested off the land he squats on. But his life gets upended when he finds an infant swaddled along with a journal in the forest, left for dead. When discovering that…
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Mostarghia

by Maya Ombasic Mostarghia starts in the days surrounding the death of Ombasic’s father. Told that she can only recover his body from the hospital morgue if a religious authority prepares it for its final resting place, we bear witness to the callousness the author is met with when church after church after church refuses…
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Collected Poems

by Marius Kociejowski I’m a fan of Kociejowski’s writing. And I tend to keep my eyes open for anything of his during my travels, though historically the exercise often has proved fruitless. Part of the issue, I feel, is that I always have associated him with his travel writing, which seems to have little in…
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Days by Moonlight

by André Alexis Days by Moonlight concerns the young botanist Alfred Homer’s journey across Southern Ontario. Alfred comes along to drive and assist Professor Bruno, a close friend of his late parents, as he interviews friends and family members of a mysterious poet––the subject of his biography-in-progress. Along the way, the pair bears witness to…
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Never Let Me Go

by Kazuo Ishiguro When reading, I tend to explore everything laid out on and within the copy of the book at hand before getting into the story proper––you know, synopses, blurbs, forewords, introductions. And I’m aware of vast differences of opinion about how you should and should not proceed in this respect, especially with regard…
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