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Jessica Henkle, Book Reviewer

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Book Review

Silver Sparrow

by Jessica Henkle

“My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist.” Thus begins Tayari Jones’s latest novel, "Silver Sparrow", a story that blossoms and winds its way around this one, life-making fact. Set in 1980’s Atlanta, the book peels open... Read More

Book Review

The Watery Part of the World

by Jessica Henkle

In 1970, Yaupon Island is down to three inhabitants: Maggie, Whaley, and Woodrow, who make up half of Michael Parker’s novel, The Watery Part of the World. The other half begins in 1813, when pirates capture and spare Theodosia Burr... Read More

Book Review

Mystery Stories

by Jessica Henkle

“It is a human weakness, remembering,” says the narrator of “Stitches in Air,” one of twelve tales in David Helwig’s collection, all of which revolve around the issue of memory. Every character suffers a loss that leaves... Read More

Book Review

Loom

by Jessica Henkle

Thérèse Soukar Chehade’s novel, Loom, is an entire story formed within a pause. Snow falls in a small Vermont town, and the members of the Zaydan family come to a halt while their cousin from Lebanon is delayed in New York. What... Read More

Book Review

The Shame of What We Are

by Jessica Henkle

“Why would anyone be nostalgic for unhappiness?” The teenage Art Dennison wonders this while contemplating his less than ideal childhood, and while realizing he actually misses it. Art, the main character of Sam Gridley’s novel,... Read More

Book Review

Color Plates

by Jessica Henkle

“What is true is hard to establish,” says one of several narrators, and this seems to especially refer to "Color Plates"—a collection of stories as abstract and varied as the paintings from which they spring. Adam Golaski uses work... Read More

Book Review

Word Catcher

by Jessica Henkle

Wordcatcher is not a typical text on etymology. With a sharp, yet conversational, tone, Phil Cousineau whisks readers through a dissection of 250 words, each accompanied by an array of anecdotes, quotes, and “companion” words. He... Read More

Book Review

The Dance Boots

by Jessica Henkle

Linda LeGarde Grover knows how to end a story—and manages to achieve both circularity and closure in each and every one. This is an impressive feat in and of itself, but for a collection of linked stories like "The Dance Boots", which... Read More

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