Joanna M. Burkhardt

45 Articles

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Creatures of Passage

Skillfully blending fantasy and stark reality while blurring the line between the metaphoric and the tangible, Yejidé (Time of the Locust) successfully tells the story in fits and starts as each major character adds a piece to the puzzle. YA and adult fiction readers alike will enjoy. Highly recommended.
PREMIUM

The Hare

Finn offers a chilling account of the ways women can be abused, with sexual assault, psychological trauma, objectification, and murder crossing class boundaries. Yet as she also shows, women often cannot escape the cages they have helped to build around their lives. A #MeToo tale that will also appeal to general readers.
PREMIUM

The Orchard

Though Hopen presents a somewhat formulaic story of the journey from child to adult, he renders it compelling by inserting discussions of Jewish and other religious traditions and making mental health—or lack thereof
PREMIUM

Northernmost

Geye does a fair job of narrating the tale in a woman’s voice, and his larger-than-life characters have skills—both mechanical and coping
PREMIUM

Dear Ann

Highly recommended for readers of general fiction and those with a special interest in the Sixties. [See Prepub Alert 3/11/20.]

PREMIUM

Ghostlove

Mahoney (Fellow Mortals) crafts an exotic and compelling story with many unexpected twists and turns as he confronts dualities encountered every day—good and evil, life and death, optimism and pessimism

Parakeet

O. Henry and Pushcart winner Bertino (2 A.M. at the Cat’s Pajamas) skillfully weaves together reality and flights of fancy as she tackles a wide variety of issues women face and the different ways to navigate these issues. An amusing yet instructive work about how personal perspective can change everything; highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, 12/2/19.]
PREMIUM

We Ride upon Sticks

Barry (She Weeps Each Time You’re Born) successfully captures the high jinks of a group of high school teens discovering themselves, learning about life, and finding out what it means to work together. Fans of coming-of-age stories will enjoy. [See Prepub Alert, 9/9/19.]
PREMIUM

The Lightness

Temple weaves Buddhist practice, rumor, philosophy, and teenage sexual longing into a story that is both deep and compelling. Her characters are complicated and conflicted, immersed in the throes of teenage angst and hormones. Any reader of general fiction would enjoy. [See Prepub Alert, 12/2/19.]
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