Yellow Ribbons and Flag Waving
Nathaniel Fick, author of the first-rate memoir One Bullet Away, has a nice piece up at the Poetry website: a review of recent war poetry. A highlight is Nate's personal use of poetry while commanding Marines in Afghanistan--and his appreciation for Brian Turner's Here, Bullet. I gave Here, Bullet a rave review last year in Rain Taxi.
The Savage Critic
I don't think Heidi Julavits got the credit her essay against snark deserved (it wasn't as namby-pamby as people said it was), but you know: I don't think I could live without snark. I love a good negative review. Especially of over-hyped books or books by famous authors who aren't living up to their talent. They can go overboard, as Michiko Kakutani did with her Caulfield-eque review of Benjamin Kunkel's worthwhile freshman effort, Indecision, a couple years ago. But still: keeping up our USRDA of schadenfreude requires negative reviews, and no one does a negative review better--more accurately, with more humor and understanding--than William Logan. His piercing of Pynchon's Against the Day in this summer's Virginia Quarterly Review is a must-read.