Michael Rubens: The Sheriff of Yrnameer

The book jacket flap of Rubens’ comic science fiction novel explicitly invites comparison to Douglas Adams (also Terry Pratchett). I can’t decide if that’s terrible idea, or a pretty good one. One the one hand there are some superficial similarities to the milieu of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy so perhaps naming the elephantContinue reading “Michael Rubens: The Sheriff of Yrnameer”

Carrie Ryan: The Forest of Hands and Teeth

The Forest of Hands and Teeth is the weirdest zombie story I’ve ever read. And it’s not just because the book never once uses the word “zombie.” It’s not even because the novel is set generations after the zombie’s victory over humanity. The Forest of Hands and Teeth opens in a small village of humansContinue reading “Carrie Ryan: The Forest of Hands and Teeth”

Laurie Viera Rigler: Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

Even though I don’t think the novel is completely successful, I still find Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict‘s premise enchanting. It’s basically Freaky Friday meets Jane Austen (although the amped-up drama is little more Brontë than Austen). Modern-day Courtney Stone wakes up in the early-19-century body of Jane Mansfield (har har) and has toContinue reading “Laurie Viera Rigler: Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict”

Karen Russell: St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves

Most of the ten stories in Russell’s debut collection share the same literary device: the unease and tension of emerging adolescent sexuality is mirrored by strangeness (supernature, surreality) in the external world. Russell has a knack for killer first sentences, like “My brother Wallow has been kicking around Gannon’s Boat Graveyard for more than anContinue reading “Karen Russell: St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves”