Robert Detman

Einstein’s Beach House by Jacob M. Appel

Einstein’s Beach House by Jacob M. Appel

Prodigiousness is usually applied to talent, but for wunderkind short story writer Jacob Appel, it is equally applicable to output. According to his website, he has published “short fiction in more than two hundred literary journals.” Reading the full bio, you learn that he’s got numerous degrees to match his many professional titles, and inquiries from the fields of bioethics, law and medicine feed the storylines in the collection—his fourth—Einstein’s Beach House. This knowledge base becomes the subtext to stories that range across such subjects as befriending the neighborhood sexual predator to the benefits of Prozac for depressive hedgehogs.

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Impossible Lives of Basher Thomas by Robert Detman

Impossible Lives of Basher Thomas by Robert Detman

Robert Detman’s novel, Impossible Lives of Basher Thomas, is a thoughtfully formulated story that illustrates a unique display of the human condition. Detman’s strengths include a great aptitude to create and develop characters with depth enough to feel genuinely involved with, and receptive to, a lithe fluency of descriptive imagery. This is an incredibly complex story covering a range of topics from artistic expression, the philosophy of art, politics, ethics, and varying dynamics of psychoanalytic behaviorism.

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Wallcreeper by Nell Zink

Wallcreeper by Nell Zink

With his concerns apropos his 2010 novel Freedomand more specifically, in his essay “Why Bother?” in the collection How to Be Alone, Jonathan Franzen sought the return of the so-called social novel. It would seem that Nell Zink has taken up the call within a new genre, the environmental novel—or more accurately, the bird watching novel. Which novel, according to an interview with the author, she wrote to get Franzen’s attention. The strategy worked: Franzen, duly impressed, acted as her agent for awhile.

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