Category New Books

New and forthcoming books from independent publishers and university presses.

NewPages Book Stand – March 2020

Book Stand - March 2020The March 2020 Book Stand is now up at NewPages! Support small and university presses, authors, and indie bookstores now by checking out new and forthcoming titles to keep you company at home. This month, we bring you featured titles from five different presses.

Five titles are forthcoming from Diode Editions this spring: The Last Human Heart by Allison Joseph; Good Timing & Gertrude Stein: Inside Snoopy’s snout maggots feats upon my blood by Julia Cohen; Prismatics: Larry Levis & Contemporary American Poetry: Interviews from the Documentary Film A Late Style of Fire edited by Gregory Donovan and Michele Poulos; Wider Than the Sky from Nancy Chen Long; and The Minister of Disturbances from Zeeshan Khan Pathan. Visit our LitPak for more information.

Before the Fevered Snow by Megan Merchant explores themes of love and loss by using the landscape of the changing seasons.

Cifford Garstang’s House of the Ancients & Other Stories looks at some of the consequences of common human failings.

One Summer on Cutthroat Lake by Owen Duffy focuses on escalating tensions as outsiders come to revitalize Cutthroat Lake Lodge as a famous photographer shows up for a magazine shoot.

Sixteen interviews with some of the most iconic eco-warriors make up Wrenched from the Land: Activists Inspired by Edward Abbey. Edited by ML Lincoln and Diane Sward Rapaport.

You can learn more about each of these featured titles at our website, and find out how to place your book in our New & Noteworthy section here: https://npofficespace.com/classified-advertising/new-title-issue-ad-reservation/.

“Social Poetics” Uncovers the Poetry of Everyday Workers

Social Poetics cover“Social Poetics” Uncovers the Poetry of Everyday Workers. By Harris Feinsod. In These Time.

Goldman and Antonio both participated in the Worker Writers School (WWS), founded by poet and activist Mark Nowak, who has offered creative writing workshops with trade unions and social movements since 2005. In Nowak’s stirring new book, Social Poetics, he documents how writing workshops can embolden workers who, to paraphrase Trinidadian historian and writer C.L.R. James, seek to chronicle their own struggles “to regain control over their own conditions of life.”

…Nowak’s work follows in the tradition of Langston Hughes, whose 1947 essay, “My Adventures as a Social Poet,” turned away from lyric poems of individual experience to the poetry of social commitment, poems that “stop talking about the moon and begin to mention poverty, trade unions, color lines and colonies.” Social Poetics relates the history of this tradition: Young English Professor Celes Tisdale and the Abenaki author Joseph Bruchac, for example, created poetry classes in prisons (which included participants in the 1971 Attica uprising).

NewPages Book Stand – February 2020

Book Stand - Feb 2020The February 2020 Book Stand is now up at NewPages! Visit for new and forthcoming titles in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, anthologies, and children’s/YA. Our New & Noteworthy section features work from six different presses month.

Diode Editions announces five forthcoming titles this spring: The Last Human Heart by Allison Joseph; Good Timing & Gertrude Stein: Inside Snoopy’s snout maggots feats upon my blood by Julia Cohen; Prismatics: Larry Levis & Contemporary American Poetry: Interviews from the Documentary Film A Late Style of Fire edited by Gregory Donovan and Michele Poulos; Wider Than the Sky from Nancy Chen Long; and The Minister of Disturbances from Zeeshan Khan Pathan. Visit our LitPak for more information.

The People’s Field by Haesong Kwon (Southeast Missouri University Press, October 2019), winner of the Cowles Poetry Prize, reflects on the sounds, ideas and histories of the Korean peninsula with attention to the Japanese occupation and the Korean War and its aftermath.

Juan Herrera invites readers to touch Connie Post’s Prime Meridian (Glass Lyre Press, January 2020) “in order to traverse the present age.”

River Teeth celebrates twenty years of publishing nonfiction with an anthology edited by founding editors Joe Mackall and Daniel W. Lehman (University of New Mexico Press, February 2020).

In Shining Man (Livingston Press, December 2019), Todd Dills “explodes themes of economic opportunity, identity and the individual’s place post-Great Recession in a politically polarized, culturally isolated, and class-stratified America.”

Debut collection A Small Thing to Want by Shuly Xóchitl Cawood (Press 53, May 2020) “chronicles the choices people make about whom to love and whom to let go, their yearnings that either bind them or set them free, and the surprising ways love shows up, without reason or restraint.”

You can learn more about each of these featured titles at our website, and find out how to place your book in our New & Noteworthy section here: https://npofficespace.com/classified-advertising/new-title-issue-ad-reservation/.

Just a Few Billion Years Left to Go

Until the End of Time graphicUntil the End of Time. Mind, Matter, and Our Search for Meaning in an Evolving Universe By Brian Greene. Book Review, New York Times.

“In the fullness of time all that lives will die.” With this bleak truth Brian Greene, a physicist and mathematician at Columbia University, the author of best-selling books like “The Elegant Universe” and co-founder of the yearly New York celebration of science and art known as the World Science Festival, sets off in “Until the End of Time” on the ultimate journey, a meditation on how we go on doing what we do, why and how it will end badly, and why it matters anyway.

“Until the End of Time” is encyclopedic in its ambition and its erudition, often heartbreaking, stuffed with too many profundities that I wanted to quote, as well as potted descriptions of the theories of a galaxy of contemporary thinkers, from Chomsky to Hawking, and anecdotes from Greene’s own life — of which we should wish for more — that had me laughing.

Women of a Certain Rage

Women of a certain ago jpegWomen of a Certain Rage. Two New Books Tackle Getting Older—and More Pissed Off. Bitchmedia.

…I can’t say whether the despair I regularly feel is statistical or situational—the world is both literally and figuratively on fire, after all; I don’t trust anyone who isn’t despairing on some level. But as a woman, I also know that there can’t be any discussion of unhappiness at any numerical point of what we call “midlife” without acknowledging the powerful cultural narratives of gender and aging.

Those narratives, and the economic, political, sexual, and pop cultural impact of them, are at the center of two new books. Ada Calhoun’s Why We Can’t Sleep: Women’s New Midlife Crisis and Susan J. Douglas’s In Our Prime: How Older Women are Reinventing the Road Ahead both approach their subject matter from generational perspectives, each starting from a place of unsettled personal clarity: Well, shit, I got old. Now what? 

How to Write Fiction When the Planet Is Falling Apart

Weather by Jenny OffillHow to Write Fiction When the Planet Is Falling Apart. New York Times Magazine.

Jenny Offill is the master of novels told in sly, burnished fragments. In her latest, ‘Weather,’ she uses this small form to address the climate collapse.

In 2005, the naturalist Robert Macfarlane asked, in an influential essay in The Guardian: “Where is the literature of climate change? Where are the novels, the plays, the poems, the songs, the libretti, of this massive contemporary anxiety?” How should we understand the paucity of the cultural response to climate change, he asked, compared with the body of work catalyzed by the threat of nuclear war? In recent years, however, planetary collapse has emerged as a dominant concern in contemporary fiction…

The climate crisis, Offill shows, is reshaping not just our world but also our minds. “Weather” joins other new fiction in transforming the novel of consciousness into a record of climate grief. “Sometimes I think that people today must be the saddest people ever, because we know we ruined everything,” the heroine of Lucy Ellmann’s “Ducks, Newburyport” thinks.

Patti Smith on Libraries and the Transformative Love of Books

Year of the MonkeyPatti Smith on Libraries and the Transformative Love of Books. Brain Pickings.

In Year of the Monkey  — her unclassifiable, symphonic exploration of dreams, love, loss, and mending the broken realities of life — Patti Smith recounts how her local childhood library nurtured her inner life, tilling the soil of her becoming.

In consonance with that lovely parenthetical line from one of Nikki Giovanni’s poems celebrating libraries and librarians — “(You never know what troubled little girl needs a book.)” — Smith writes of the endearing, almost unreasonable devotion with which she sought solace for her nine-year-old troubles amid the stacks.

Threats against the author of ‘American Dirt’ threaten us all

American Dirt coverThreats against the author of ‘American Dirt’ threaten us all. By Ron Charles, The Washington Post.

And in the current climate, hate quickly becomes weaponized. Gurba told Vox this week that she had received death threats after posting her review of “American Dirt.” And the ad hominem comments about Cummins flying around the Web have been brutal. From the start, too much of the discussion of this mediocre novel has been snarled up in identity politics — a poisonous tendency encouraged by the author herself. In a pleading afterword to “American Dirt,” Cummins confesses that she wished “someone slightly browner than me would write it.”

…But some detractors are determined to short-circuit such a possibility — or any discussion sparked by this novel. Fortunately, Flatiron remains committed to serious debate. Although Cummins’s bookstore tour has been canceled, the publisher has announced plans to conduct town hall meetings involving Cummins and “some of the groups who have raised objections to the book.” Let’s hope those discussions can move forward without bullying, intimidation or violence.

…The best critics of “American Dirt” are clearly motivated by a desire to defend the integrity of Mexican culture and the humanity of our most vulnerable residents. But in today’s toxic atmosphere, those valuable critiques have been drowned out by a cowardly chorus of violence.

NewPages Book Stand – January 2020

NewPages Book Stand - January 2020A new Book Stand is available at NewPages! Visit for new and forthcoming titles in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, anthologies, and children’s/YA. Our New & Noteworthy section features six titles this month.

Americans Are trump by Randall G. Nichols explores the mindset of Americans who support our current president.

Dispatches from the End of Ice by Beth Peterson “is part science, part lyric essay, and part research reportage.”

In HULL, Xandria Phillips “explores emotional impacts of colonialism and racism on the Black queer body and the present-day emotional impacts of enslavement in urban, rural, and international settings” in their debut collection.

Orison Books has released their fourth anthology, “an annual collection of the finest spiritually engaged writing that appeared in periodicals in the preceding year.”

Someone You Love Is Still Alive by Ephraim Scott Sommers has been called “a gorgeous and dangerous book” by Jericho Brown.

Thirty-six writers share their worst reading experiences in What Could Possibly Go Wrong? edited by Richard Peabody.

You can learn more about each of these featured titles at our website. Interested in placing your book in our New & Noteworthy section? Learn more here.

Personal stories of the exodus from Christianity

Empty-the-Pews.jpgEmpty the Pews: Stories of Leaving the Church” – Even as the American Christian right maintains its power and influence — despite a recent dust-up with President Trump — its children continue to abandon the fold. A recent survey by the Pew Research Center shows that fewer Americans across the political spectrum are identifying as Christian, and the phenomenon is particularly pronounced among the young.

In “Empty the Pews: Stories of Leaving the Church,” mostly Gen X and millennial writers describe their disillusionment with the faith of their youth and their departure from their religious communities.

…But the collection’s overall framing seems to equate the bigotry and ignorance of some Christians with Christianity itself. As Schaeffer writes in his foreword, “The grim ‘witness’ of how Christians have behaved and voted is too heavy a blow for faith in magical thinking to survive.” Here his critique of the Christian right slides into an implied critique of belief (“magical thinking”). In the book’s final essay, Isaac Marion is even more explicit: “All religious belief is a game of pretend.”