Reviews

‘Thrown’: MFA grad writes about MMA training

Kerry Howley’s “Thrown” (Sarabande Books, 282 pages, $15.95) is a non-fiction book with a fictional narrator.

The book ... »

‘Binary Star’: Gerard penned hypnotic narrative on eating disorder

A young woman in the grips of an eating disorder narrates her codependent relationship with her alcoholic boyfriend in Sarah Gerard’s debut ... »

‘On Immunity’: An introspection on inoculation, immunity

In “On Immunity: An Inoculation,” Eula Biss explores the anxieties and prejudices swirling through debates about vaccination. Biss, w ... »

‘Splinters of Light’: Author finds joy in tragic tale

Imagine you are a successful 44-year-old woman. You have overcome raising your daughter alone after your husband left for a younger woman and start ... »

‘The Unraveling of Mercy Louis’: Writer is one to watch

Growing up is complicated, especially for young women in Texas, or so it seems in Keija Parssinen’s second novel, “The Unraveling of ... »

“Act of God’: Book belies slapstick humor, goes deeper

Dealing with mold is never pleasant. Jill Ciment’s remarkable new novel takes that unpleasantness a step further, introducing the world to a ... »

‘Letter to a Future Lover’: Peculiar essays urge engagement

Ander Monson’s “Letter to a Future Lover: Marginalia, Errata, Secrets, Inscriptions, and Other Ephemera Found in Libraries” (G ... »

‘There’s Something I Want You To Do’: Baxter is a brilliant writer

There’s no doubt that Charles Baxter is a brilliant writer, a treasure of the Midwest. But even the greats can stumble, and unfortunately Ba ... »

‘Past Crimes’: Debut thriller reads like it’s by a seasoned vet

Glen Erik Hamilton doesn’t have any past novels to his credit, but his debut, “Past Crimes” (William Morrow, 324 pages, $26.99 ... »

‘Welcome to Braggsville’: Author earns bragging rights

“Welcome to Braggsville” (William Morrow, 355 pages, $25.99), the new novel by Iowa Writers’ Workshop grad and current visitin ... »

‘Girl on the Train’: A thrilling whodunit

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins is everywhere — book blogs, magazines and on bookstore shelves — right now. It ... »

‘Moo!’: Story of car-driving cow a read aloud favorite

David LaRochelle’s “Moo!” is a funny and charming tale of adventure.

Who wouldn’t love a story about a cow joy-r ... »

‘Love Sonfs for the Quarantined’:ISU professor crafts believable characters

K.L. Cook crafts stories populated by characters who seem wholly real. Each story in Cook’s award-winning 2011 collection, “Love Song ... »

‘The Maid Narratives’: Stories, no matter how small, are important

When we think of leaders in the civil rights movement, we often think of people like the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. or Malcolm X — powe ... »

‘A Replacement Life’: A serious, funny novel about war

“A Replacement Life,” the debut novel from Boris Fishman, is many stories in one. It’s the story of Slava Gelman, a young, str ... »