This was an excellent week for The Library at Winkelman Abbey. First up is the latest issue of Pulphouse Fiction Magazine, followed by the latest issue of Apex Magazine. Both of these are the results of successful Kickstarter campaigns. Next are the two latest books (Tentacle by Rita Indiana, Slip of a Fish by Amy Arnold) from my subscription to And Other Stories. On the top right is Ink by Sabrina Vourvoulias, from Rosarium Publishing.
The entire bottom row is my first shipment from Ugly Duckling Presse, to whom I subscribed back in July when I had a little extra money and no immediate household needs. From left to right they are Orange by Christine Herzer, Wolfman Librarian by Filip Marinovich, This Window Makes Me Feel by Robert Fitterman, Feeling Upon Arrival by Saretta Morgan, Defense of the Idol by Omar Cáceres, and Dear Angel of Death by Simone White. All are poetry, and all are beautiful editions of beautiful writing.
Once again, this week’s haul is made up entirely of books from independent publishers. Save for Ink, all are part of annual subscriptions. If Rosarium ever offers a subscription to their catalog, I will be the FIRST in line to purchase one.
Last week brought a small pile of books. On the left is Sunvault: Stories of Solarpunk and Eco-Speculation, which I picked up as research material for an upcoming anthology submission. The second, Scarborough, was recommended to me by my girlfriend, and on quick glance looks like it will be a fantastic, emotional read. Celadon is collection of poetry by my friend (and 3288 Review contributor!) Ian Haight. Checkpoint is the most recent arrival through my subscription to Restless Books.
Bonus note: all four of these are published by indie publishing houses!
One day I will be retired or otherwise unemployed, and on that day my pile of unread books will start to shrink. Or more likely, continue to grow at a slower pace.
Another light week for new acquisitions, but what it lacks in quantity it more than makes up for in quality.
On the left is Paternus: Wrath of Gods by Dyrk Ashton. This is the sequel to the fantastic Paternus: Rise of Gods, which I finished back in the middle of summer.
On the right is American Fictionary by Dubravka Ugresic, the most recent delivery from Open Letter Books. I am now well into my third year of subscribing to Open Letter, and my only regret is that my reading time is so limited that I will likely never catch up with the ever-growing stack.
This was a good week for books! A little over half of them (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) are from publishers to whose catalogs I subscribe. A couple (2, 11) are from Kickstarters, one (1) is for research for an upcoming call for submissions, and the last (10) is just because it is an interesting title on an interesting subject.
Here are the latest books and magazines to arrive at my house. From left, Amazing Stories, Girl Genius: Kings and Wizards and The Paris Review.
Amazing Stories and Girl Genius came from Kickstarter campaigns, and I have a years-old subscription to The Paris Review
Last week was light on new reading material arriving at the house, in no small part because I’m taking a break from buying books because I’ve spent so much money recently on new books. These are all from subscription. From the top: Apex Magazine #111, McSweeney’s #53 and the September/October issue of Poets & Writers.
McSweeney’s has a waterproof vinyl cover and arrived in a plastic Ziploc bag similar to one which might be found in a department store, containing an assortment of underwear of t-shirts. The bag also contained a number of balloons, each of which has printed upon it a paragraph of text which may or may not be part of a short story if the balloons were all inflated and arranged in the proper order. Oh, McSweeney’s. Never stop being wonderful.
Another fine week for reading. From top to bottom, they are: Fence, Patio, Blessed Virgin by Kristin Brace, The Cooking Gene by Michael W. Twitty, Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain, Narrator by Bragi Olaffson, Salvage issue #5, and Jacobin issue #30.
Kristin announced Fence, Patio, Blessed Virgin at a reading back in, I think, late April. This is her first book, and it is wonderful!
I picked up The Cooking Gene and Kitchen Confidential at the We Are Lit popup bookstore, which was set up in the Downtown Market in Grand Rapids. They are run entirely online, with occasional popups, and have an excellently curated selection of books.
Narrator came in as the most recent volume from my subscription to Open Letter Books.
Salvage is an interesting journal based in England, to which I subscribed on a whim. I discovered it during an afternoon of reading leftist fiction and researching different -punk subgenres. I came across a reference to “salvagepunk” and, upon further inquiry, this was one of the top results, with China Mieville’s name displayed prominently. I honestly never expected to receive any issues of this, but here it is, and it is a thing of beauty.
Receiving a new issue of Jacobin is always a pleasure. The writing is top-notch, the content important and interesting (particularly in the current pre-apocalyptic political climate), and the physical artifact is a thing of beauty.
This was a good week for books. From top to bottom: Selected Poems of Sergei Yesenin, Voronezh Notebooks by Osip Mandelstam, First Love and Other Stories by Ivan Turgenev, Selected Poems of Vladimir Mayakovsky, The Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts, Celadon by Ian Haight, Granta issue #144, Apex Magazine Issue 110, and Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse.
For links to these authors, books and publishers, please see their listings on my 2018 Reading List page.
Thanks to a small gift card from work, I was able to pick up the four Russian authors from Amazon.com. They are unusual-enough titles that I didn’t want to burden the local bookstores with hunting them down. The Watts and Roanhorse books I ordered from Books and Mortar here in Grand Rapids, and I have ongoing subscriptions to the two journals. I picked up Ian Haight’s book at a small signing in Lowell this past Monday. It was great to finally meet Ian, after publishing him in Issue 1.3 of The 3288 Review, back in early 2016.
Since I just finished reading At the Existentialist Cafe by Sarah Bakewell and Paternus by Dyrk Ashton, Trail of Lightning is currently at the top of the to-read pile, and I can’t wait to dive in.
A small bonus from work allowed me to pick up a few books which have been on my want list for some time. Yeah, I have eclectic reading tastes. From top to bottom, they are: New Kind of Rebellion, by Rachel Gleason; The Black Tides of Heaven and The Red Threads of Fortune by JY Yang; Ambiguity Machines by Vandana Singh; Afrofuturism by Ytasha L. Womack; New Poets of Native Nations, edited by Heid E. Erdrich; and The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O. by Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland.
Several years ago I began collecting books from publishers who specialize in translations from other languages into English. This was prompted by two circumstances. First, a co-worker from bygone years, Chad Post, began working at Open Letter Books in Rochester, NY. Second, on a visit to the Grand Rapids Public Library I discovered Esperanza Street by Niyati Keni, published by And Other Stories.
My eyes having been opened, and knowing a thing or two about the publishing world, I began researching small presses and books in translation. This led to the discovery that some of the most successful publishers, with the most exciting titles and authors, offered subscriptions to their catalogs. What a wonderful way to discover new authors, support small businesses, and add quality and variety to a personal library!
As of the publishing date of this post, I have subscriptions to Open Letter Books, Restless Books, Deep Vellum, & Other Stories, and Two Lines Press.
I found a couple of pages which have comprehensive lists of publishers of works in translation – The American Literary Translators Association and PEN America. What follows is a subset (probably incomplete) of publishers from these two lists which offer subscriptions to their catalogs. Links go to subscription information.