SpeakEasy Blog

Seriously Questioning…Ada Calhoun

Ada Calhoun is the author of two nonfiction books recently published by W.W. Norton & Co.: St. Marks Is Dead was named a New York Times Editors’ Pick, Amazon Book of the Month, and one of the best books of the year by Kirkus, The Boston Globe, Orlando Weekly, and The Village Voice, which called… Continue Reading

Seriously Questioning… Glenn Frankel

  Glenn Frankel is an author and journalist, based in Arlington, Virginia. Most recently, he served as the director of the School of Journalism and G.B. Dealey Regents Professor at the University of Texas at Austin. He has also spent time as a visiting journalism professor at Stanford University and an Alicia Patterson Fellow. Notably, he… Continue Reading

Seriously Questioning… Tony Tulathimutte

Last year Tony Tulathimutte published his first novel, Private Citizens (William Morrow, 2016), to admiring notices from New York Magazine, which called it “a Great American Novel“, and Jonathan Franzen, who labeled Tulathimutte “a big talent“. Last week he won the Whiting Award for Fiction. Next week he will join our Seriously Entertaining line-up at Joe’s… Continue Reading

Seriously Questioning… Brenda Shaughnessy

Brenda Shaughnessy’s witty, moving, fiery new collection, So Much Synth (Copper Canyon Press, 2016), takes us into the past. In its longest poem, “Is There Something I Should Know?”, Shaughnessy remembers a world of Simple Minds and Duran Duran songs, where she finds a young woman haunted by the changes in her body, caught in “pubescence’s acrid synthesis”,… Continue Reading

Seriously Questioning… Mitchell S. Jackson

The recipient of a Whiting Award in 2016, Mitchell S. Jackson has a bright future. When Roxane Gay reviewed The Residue Years, his 2013 debut novel (or “novel“, as the cover has it; it’s also sort of a memoir), she picked out its language, “flying off the page with percussive energy“, its “warmth and wit”, “a hard-won… Continue Reading

Seriously Questioning… Idra Novey

To translate is not just to render in a different language but (done well) to ventriloquize the soul of another. It is to understand undercurrents transcendently, better to realize meaning. Translation isn’t just Babel fishing; it’s screen printing, recreation, midwifery. Idra Novey, the Brooklyn-based novelist and poet who’s translated Clarice Lispector, Paulo Henriques Britto, and Lascano… Continue Reading

Space Oddity

Black Hole Blues and Other Songs From Outer Space Janna Levin Knopf, 2016; 256pp The romance of the cosmos is the subject of Black Hole Blues. The romance of bodies of unimaginable size colliding and merging darkly and silently in space. Romance, yes — but also the knotty bureaucracy that has hampered and enabled scientists for the… Continue Reading

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