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John Madera | Word Riot
Reviews | January 15, 2010

Kamby Bolongo Mean River by Robert Lopez

Reviewed by John Madera

With all of the almost necrophilic releases of famous writers’ unpublished works (the recent posthumous publication of Nabokov’s The Original of Laura comes to mind), you might think, especially because of its affectless prose, its despairing tone, its absurdities and monotonies, that Kamby Bolongo Mean River is the last treasure trove from the Samuel Beckett estate:

I didn’t forget about the you in how are you but when I think too much about one word and then another I sometimes decide I’ve had enough of the words and will listen only to the voice from then

Reviews | December 15, 2009

Dear Everybody by Michael Kimball

Review by John Madera

Dear Michael Kimball,

Strangely, instead of writing “Reviewed by John Madera” above, I wrote: “Reviewed by Michael Kimball.” I have, as you can see, already fixed the mistake. I’m not sure why I initially wrote “Reviewed by Michael Kimball.” It wasn’t a conscious thing, something I deliberated over. I wasn’t thinking of using some kind of Borgesian conceit or metafictional trick. It just happened that way. I also didn’t know that I was going to write a letter to you, hadn’t planned it, until after I had typed out some of my favorite passages from your

Reviews | November 15, 2009

The Delicacy and Strength of Lace: Letters Between Leslie Marmon Silko and James Wright

Paperback: 112 pages Graywolf Press (October 27, 2009) ISBN-10: 1555975437 ISBN-13: 978-1555975432

Review by John Madera

With all kinds of worthless chit chatting and twitter jibber jabbering going on, The Delicacy and Strength is less a reminder that epistolary literature is a lost art, but more a revelation that its possibilities are still available, if one avails his- or herself to it at all. Leslie Marmon Silko and James Wright met only two times, the first time at a writers conference in Michigan and the second in a New York City hospital where Wright lay dying of cancer. Between these