Happy Thanksgiving, Lennys! We're celebrating the holiday by cozying up with some of the books we're most thankful for. We hope that you'll have time to do the same. xoxo, Team LennyMore
This absorbing book of poems by Julie Cameron Gray eschews abstraction in favor of finely honed narratives about women lost in identities they chose wrongly (or that were chosen for them.) Lady Crawford features careening, sexy stories of lost youth and self-aggrandizing fantasies of triumph. A favorite of these mini-epics is the poem "Skinbyrds." It's the story of a teenage skinhead drawn to her twisted subculture for approval and escape. "So why are we standing around, waiting for the boys to be interesting?... We know why we're here./We're waiting for our moment/to come, the chance to throw our arms/around the sun, the mace of our days,/and hunt down the good time that we're owed."
It's rare to laugh out loud on the first page of a novel, but I did just that while reading Elizabeth Crane's We Only Know So Much, which is about a few generations of a small-town Midwestern family, the Copelands, living in the same house. "First of all, Priscilla is a bitch," Crane's omniscient narrator announces. "Or at least a brat. An extreme brat. Look, we're just reporting what we've heard. Maybe bitch is too harsh. Let's say it this way: her attitude is often poor. The reasons are currently unclear." The entire novel is told from this knowing, tart perspective, and Crane creates memorable characters, especially a disaffected spouse who is secretly mourning the death of her lover. It's a funny, absorbing romp.