Two new reviews of mine appeared this past week:
At Open Letters Review, on The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online:
As they should, the essays collected in The Digital Critic: Literary Culture Online offer a mixed assessment of the literary culture the Internet has both transformed and distorted. By now it is clear that online literary culture is no longer seen as an appendage to the “real,” more serious and authoritative culture originating in print but is now a fully functioning source of both literary writing and commentary about that writing—it might be argued, in fact, that it now provides the largest and most significant part of the latter. While The Digital Critic is not focused on making such an argument, nevertheless the range of issues discussed makes it clear that, for better and worse, the futures of writing, reading, and publishing are inextricably tied to the ways in which everyone involved adapts to the possibilities and the limitations of cyberspace as a communications medium.
On Irish writer Mike McCormack's Solar Bones at Full Stop:
The most immediately visible characteristics that frequently seem to prompt both readers and critics to label a work of fiction “experimental” or “unconventional” (or perhaps just “quirky”) are the appearance of irregular sentence patterns, an apparent disregard for the expectations of realism (in literary fiction, at least) and a formal arrangement that can’t be described as simply identical with the narrative movement the work offers. By this measure, Mike McCormack’s Solar Bones can be called experimental, although any reader who gives the novel a chance to validate its strategies is likely to affirm relatively quickly that these more adventurous qualities of the novel — adventurous, but not conspicuously “difficult” — do not ultimately make it inaccessible except to the most passive kind of reading.