Author Archives: Fiction Advocate

HITTING SHELVES #35: Lions by Bonnie Nadzam


Lions by Bonnie Nadzam comes out today!

It’s the story of a “living ghost town” in the high plans of Colorado, where the members of the Walker family face a choice between sticking it out while their town crumbles or striking out for something better. Nadzam wrote the acclaimed novel Lamb and co-authored the inventive short story collection Love in the Anthropocene. With Lions, she has written a clear-eyed and beautiful exploration of family loyalty and shattered dreams.

We asked the author one question.

How are you celebrating the publication of Lions? Continue reading

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What We’re Reading – July 2016

Ninety-Nine Stories of God

Ninety-Nine Stories of God by Joy Williams: “This series of short, fictional vignettes explores our day-to-day interactions with an ever-elusive and arbitrary God. The Lord shows up at a hot-dog-eating contest, a demolition derby, a formal gala, and a drugstore, where he’s in line to get a shingles vaccination. At turns comic and yearning, lyric and aphoristic, Ninety-Nine Stories of God serves as a pure distillation of one of our great artists.”

You Are Having a Good Time

You Are Having a Good Time by Amie Barrodale: “Barrodale’s protagonists drink too much, say the wrong things, want the wrong people. They’re hounded by longings (and sometimes ghosts) to the point where they are forced to confront the illusions they cling to. They’re brought to life in stories that don’t behave as you expect stories to behave. Barrodale’s startlingly funny and original fictions get under your skin and make you reconsider the fragile compromises that underpin our daily lives.”

Multiple Choice

Multiple Choice by Alejandro Zambra: “Written in the form of a standardized test, Multiple Choice invites the reader to respond to virtuoso language exercises and short narrative passages through multiple-choice questions that are thought-provoking, usually unanswerable, and often absurd. At once funny, poignant, and political, Multiple Choice is about love and family, authoritarianism and its legacies, and the conviction that, rather than learning to think for ourselves, we are trained to obey and repeat.”

Also this month: We’ll interview Rebecca Traister (author of All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation), we’ll review Pond by Claire-Louise Bennett, and we’ll hear from Bonnie Nadzam about her new novel, Lions.

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HITTING SHELVES #34: Will & I by Clay Byars

Will & I_V3.indd

Will & I comes out today!

It’s a memoir by Clay Byars, who endured a near-fatal car crash and a massive stroke at age eighteen. Doctors said he would be paralyzed for life from the eyes down. As Clay struggles to recover—to literally regain his voice—his twin brother, Will, gets married and raises a family, while his former love interest moves on. Will & I is a fearsomely honest memoir about frustration, resilience, and the construction of personal dignity.

We asked the author one question. Continue reading

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Ash Consults the Necronomicon

Ash Consults the Necronomicon

What dark secrets does your future hold?

Ashley Wells, the movie critic behind The Boomstick Film Club, looks deep into her evil book in search of your new favorite movie.

Write the names of the last 3 movies you loved in the comments section, and Ash will consult her necronomicon and give you a personalized recommendation for what to watch next.

Klaatu barada nikto!


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Knowledge Porn

The Last Samurai

Over at The Millions, our very own Brian Hurley writes about Helen DeWitt’s The Last Samurai and novels that “perpetuate a seductive fantasy about the nature of intelligence.”

Read that thing.

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HITTING SHELVES #33: Marrow Island by Alexis M. Smith

Marrow Island

Marrow Island comes out today!

It’s the story of a rugged island in Washington state that was devastated in a huge earthquake. Lucie Bowen was a child when the island was evacuated, and now, twenty years later, her best friend Katie convinces her to come back and see how a group of environmental activists known as “the Colony” has repopulated the ecosystem. But Lucie discovers that the island may have a sinister effect on everyone there.

We asked the author one question.

How are you celebrating the publication of Marrow Island? Continue reading

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