Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Some Books of Note

I recently read for review (in Galatea Resurrects) Linda Hogan's new book of poetry, Rounding the Human, by Linda Hogan (Coffee House Press, Minneapolis, 2008). It's a remarkable work by a remarkable poet. I read it once for pleasure and twice more closely for review. Now that it's been couple of months since I wrote the review, I've gone back to reread it again to learn from it. It's truly one of those books that you find more and more in each time you open its pages.

I've also just read Cristina Henriquez's unbelievably good first novel, The World in Half (Riverhead Books, 2009), which is coming out later this year. I had not been familiar with her work, other than a short story I had read in a literary magazine a while back. This is a beautiful and poignant book that combines geology, Alzheimer's, tragic star-crossed love, coming-of-age, and a search for a never-known father into one seamless whole that echoes in the heart and mind long after finishing the book and putting it away. Her characters live, and with all their flaws, we care about them and long for them to make the right decisions in their lives. Panama comes to life as vividly as one of the characters and impacts all of them. This is a young writer with great talent. I can't wait to see where she will go with it.

It's Friday, and everything still looks wonderful out there in the world. President Obama has rescinded the orders to torture and once again the United States is living up to its promise and ideals in that regard. Tough choices ahead for that man and for us. May we all choose wisely. May we all choose with both minds and hearts.

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