Foreword Reviews

Mari Carlson, Book Reviewer

When not reading fiction and writing reviews, Mari is probably practicing violin or teaching lessons or playing a gig. She enjoys the local literary and music scenes in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Book Review

One Left

by Mari Carlson

In Kim Soom’s novel "One Left", an elderly woman recalls her experience in a Manchurian comfort station during the Pacific War. The main character, referred to as “she,” is taken away from her home at the age of thirteen, believing... Read More

Book Review

By the Tale of the Dragonfly

by Mari Carlson

In its inquisitive and positive accounts of world traveling, the historical novel "By the Tale of the Dragonfly" follows a former soldier living life on his own terms in the wake of WWII. In Vincent Hancock’s historical novel "By the... Read More

Book Review

Pureland

by Mari Carlson

In Zarrar Said’s epic novel "Pureland", a servant turned physicist wrestles with science, faith, and love. Salim is born a Pureland plebeian in 1950, but a levitating ascetic prophesies future greatness for him, influencing his fate.... Read More

Book Review

Father Divine's Bikes

by Mari Carlson

Father Divine’s Bikes is a haunting historical novel about a city’s coming of age. Steve Bassett’s novel, Father Divine’s Bikes, exposes postwar Newark’s underbelly. Following two related murders, circulation wars between major... Read More

Book Review

Note by Note

by Mari Carlson

"Note by Note" is both a memoir and a manual for general healing. Healing yourself and healing others go hand in hand, according to Kristi Magraw’s interactive memoir, "Note by Note". Magraw grew up on Washington’s Eagle Island in... Read More

Book Review

This Little Family

by Mari Carlson

Inès Bayard’s novel This Little Family, translated from French, is about the devastating aftermath of a rape. Raised in a loving household outside of Paris, Marie moves into the city as an adult. She works, dines out, and promenades... Read More

Book Review

In Suspension

by Mari Carlson

"In Suspension" is a refreshing collection in which parochial life is addressed with hope and style. The short stories and graphic art of John Tarpey’s "In Suspension" are set in rural Ireland. Bored patrons and the senior citizens... Read More

Book Review

Gretel and Zita

by Mari Carlson

"Gretel and Zita" is an eye-opening political saga concerned with the fates of bears and humans, too. A mountain bear upends a mayor’s burgeoning career in Jiannina Camillo’s novel "Gretel and Zita", which was inspired by true... Read More

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