O Beautiful

O Beautiful by Jung Yun (coming November 2021) is the story of the return of Elinor Hanson, a forty-something former-model-turned-journalist, to North Dakota near her hometown. Avery is a town full of changes brought by the oil boom in the Bakken shale, where people sleep in parking lots because there are no hotels to beContinue reading “O Beautiful”

The Queen’s Gambit

I wanted to like The Queen’s Gambit (1983) by Walter Tevis. Although he died in 1984, many writers list him as one of their favorite authors. (See The Writer’s Library, by Nancy Pearl and Jeff Schwager.) I’ve always wanted to learn to play chess, so was drawn to the idea of a girl/woman chess player,Continue reading “The Queen’s Gambit”

Fat Girl Finishing School

Fat Girl Finishing School by Rachel Wiley (2014 and reprinted in 2020) is the Columbus, Ohio area poetry slam artist’s first published book of poetry. It includes more than forty poems, including the widely-shared (and linked above) “10 Honest Thoughts on Being Loved by a Skinny Boy.” Wiley is biracial and unapologetically fat and queer.Continue reading “Fat Girl Finishing School”

Lightning Men

Lightning Men (2017) by Thomas Mullen, is the second in a series of historical mystery/ police procedural novels that begins with Darktown (2015), which I reviewed here. They are set in Jim Crow Atlanta, and are centered around the first black police officers, who patrol the black part of town, known as Darktown. Lightning MenContinue reading “Lightning Men”