This is one of the most important books I’ve read. Ono examines the unraveling of a young boy’s memories of his traumatic past and the healing that can come from kindness and community. Reading Lion Cross Point was such as singular experience and it is so exquisitely written that even the recall takes my breath away.
Spanning a decade of passion, progressiveness and piercings, Azerrad profiles bands (including Black Flag and Sonic Youth) and the groundbreaking contributions they made to the independent music movement. Our band is an engaging chronicle of subversive music, underground culture and the persistence of the DIY spirit. *Start with the chapter on Minutemen, a personal favorite and the inspiration behind the book’s title.*
Told through parallel and at times intersecting narratives, After the Winter is an introspective story that examines the ways trauma can shape our relationships, sense of self, and ability to love or empathize. Nettel’s affecting style illuminates a very human struggle between the safety of seclusion and the need for genuine connection with another.
Can love be measured? What drives the desire to seek connection and what can that tell us about ourselves? Is it a genuine yearning to be part of another person, become them, to view the world from a perspective entirely other? Or do we want to see ourselves reflected back, a validation of our humanity? Could this just be a totally pedestrian biological device, a chemical manipulation? Some nefarious capitalistic scheme? A precarious social experiment? You know, there’s probably not a unifying answer here, but Lacey provides the framework through which we might begin to examine our own motivations and the institutions and constructs we’ve built around them.
Motoya’s English-language debut is a surreal collection of stories that are (in turns) bizarre, whimsical and strangely humorous reflections on the mundanities of life and work, gender roles, identity and transcending banality and complacency in romantic relationships.
An uncanny daydream of a novel that makes the most exquisite reference to Joy Division. Set in 1980s Mexico, it’s a strange mesmeric portrait of youth and subculture, infatuation and isolation, and the search for a lost troupe of Ukranian dwarves that ends up becoming a quest for self-discovery.
Taxidermy might be Jessa’s way of suppressing her sexuality, identity, memories of the women who left her in heartbreak. Her mother, Libby, features the form in risqué sculptures in an effort to subvert the constraints of marriage and reclaim her sense of self. Then there’s Milo, younger brother, more or less left out of it, a passive participant in his own life. Mostly Dead Things is a tender, aching, raw portrayal of a family in mourning and all the strange, sometimes funny, and convoluted ways we live with and within our grief.