Tonstant Weader Reviews

Opinionated Book Reviews.


Farrar Straus and Giroux

Mecca by Susan Straight

Mecca is a messy book. It spreads out past the confines of a single main character. It moves from place to place in Southern California. It shifts from first to second to third person. It sprawls, but the centrifugal force... Continue Reading →

Wildland by Evan Osnos

Wildland describes the many ways Americans lost faith in their government and society, becoming a tinderbox waiting for the arsonist Donald Trump. It begans with the attack on 9/11/2001 and continues to the insurrection on 1/6/2021, looking at the many... Continue Reading →

The Topeka School by Ben Lerner

The Topeka School is hard for me to describe as the plot is less important than the characters and how they develop. At the center is Adam, a high school student and debate competitor expected to win the national championship.... Continue Reading →

The Unpassing by Chia-Chia Lin

The Unpassing, by Chia-Chia Lin, is an extraordinary story of the disintegration of a Taiwanese family who came to America, choosing Alaska for their immigrant dream. It is narrated by Gavin, a young boy who fell sick and into a... Continue Reading →

Instructions for a Funeral by David Means

Instructions for a FuneralĀ is an extraordinary collection of fourteen short stories by David Means. In "Fistfight, Sacramento, August 1950", a simple fistfight turns out to be fraught with history and symbolism. In "The Terminal Artist" a grieving family learns their... Continue Reading →

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