Reviewer: CR

By this author

book June 03, 2017


In 2007 Inga Simpson, not yet a successful novelist, is stuck on a wearying conference call when she first sees the cedar cottage that will change her life. It sits in a misty forest and is up for sale. Simpson and her partner, a writer known here as …

book May 06, 2017

Disappearing Off the Face of the Earth

This second novel from David Cohen, a well-regarded short-fiction author, concerns Ken, whose narration seems deliberately bland; he’s a bit of a no-hoper but one competent enough to have opened a depressing self-storage facility in a desolate part …

book April 15, 2017

The Impossible Fortress

The Impossible Fortress, the fiction debut from Jason Rekulak, also a publisher, is the first-person story of Billy, a smart, nice-natured and befuddleable 14-year-old living in “the Armpit of New Jersey”.  The late-’80s world of Billy …

book March 11, 2017

How to Murder Your Life

[TOC:ul In this story] The non-fashion world met Cat Marnell in a New York Post column in June 2012 headlined “Drugs More Fun than Work”, which reported that Marnell, a “drug-addicted beauty columnist” for online site xoJane, …

book February 18, 2017

The Refugees

[TOC:ul In this story] In this sophisticated collection by Vietnamese-American Viet Thanh Nguyen, whose novel The Sympathizer won the Pulitzer Prize last year, eight individuals seek meaning from the past, or just as often, find this meaning …

book January 28, 2017

The Trees

[TOC:ul In this story] You can argue all you want about the timeless value of literature, but surely at least some of it is seasonal. This year the Australian summer was particularly late, which makes it feel earned, and with this comes the sense that …

book November 19, 2016

Swing Time

[TOC:ul In this story] In a review of Zadie Smith’s White Teeth published in 2000, James Wood used the book to open a discussion of the “big contemporary novel”, characterising this kind of work as “a perpetual-motion machine that appears …

book November 05, 2016


[TOC:ul In this story] The recent efforts by journalist Claudio Gatti to uncover the identity of Italian novelist Elena Ferrante have been gross. The desire to learn more about Ferrante arises from the fact that many readers have engaged strongly with …

book October 29, 2016

Another Day in the Death of America

[TOC:ul In this story] November 23, 2013 was “just another day in America”, writes Gary Younge at the outset of this startling and upsetting book of reporting. “And as befits an unremarkable Saturday in America, ten children and teens were killed …