Literary Magazine Reviews

Monthly reviews of print, online, and digital literary magazines.

Posted August 15, 2014

 

Conjunctions CoverConjunctions

Number 62

Spring 2014

Biannual

Review by Justin Brouckaert

The first and most obvious thing to notice about Conjunctions is that its biannual print anthology is enormous. This issue is more than 300 pages, featuring work by Brian Evenson, Laura van den Berg, Robin Hemley, Gabriel Blackwell, and others. The theme of the issue, “exile,” is addressed both literally and figuratively, with work often revolving around ideas of social exile and self-exile as well as physical displacement...
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Cream City Review CoverCream City Review

Volume 38 Number 1

Spring/Summer 2014

Biannual

Review by Justin Brouckaert

Based at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Cream City Review is a fun, slim publication that opens its pages wide to different aesthetics and styles. There are magical stories set side-by-side with realist flash fiction, and in the middle of the issue is a special feature on Native writing. It’s rare that I’m able to say I have no clue what to expect from one page to the next in a literary journal, but in Cream City Review, that’s absolutely the case...
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decomP CoverdecomP

August 2014

Monthly [o]

Review by Kirsten McIlvenna

With a mix of flash prose, short prose, poetry, and book reviews, decomP delivers an online literary magazine monthly, with a fair tasting of good literature and samples of audio readings throughout. Adam and Eve's marital and sex life comes to life in the first included piece, Adam Gnuse's "Adam, at Night." Although Eve is comforted by her child, Adam worries and is resentful about his eventual death, seeming to say that even in the beginning of life, the first man to live still questions life after death: "He wonders…
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Dogwood CoverDogwood

Volume 13

2014

Annual

Review by Sherra Wong

This issue of Dogwood serves up a generous helping of surprising and original reading. The talent is evident; even when a poem or story can use more polish, I am interested and compelled to read on. A variety of styles is represented, some more experimental than others, but I never feel lost, either literally or emotionally, or feel that the writers draw too much attention to themselves at the expense of the writing…
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Five Points CoverFive Points

Volume 16 Number 1

2014

Triannual

Review by Chip Livingston

This issue of Five Points is an issue of reflection, from its opening tribute to Maxine Kumin, in which associate editor Beth Gylys remembers researching the literary friendship between Kumin and Anne Sexton for her college senior thesis, to the poems of Ellen Bass and Barbara Hamby, who reflect on meals of pork chops and fried chicken, respectively. We also have the reflective photographs of Vesna Pavlović through his project “Fabrics of Socialism” and Kirk West’s photos of blues venues…
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James Dickey Review CoverJames Dickey Review

Volume 30 Number 2

Spring/Summer 2014

Biannual

Review by Elaine Fowler Palencia

Published at Lynchburg College in Virginia, this review has roots in the South as deep as James Dickey’s. But while its content aims “to maintain an artistic and intellectual connection” to Dickey and his work, the interpretation is generous enough to allow for a good mix of Dickey scholarship, original poetry, essays not about the author but maybe concerning things he would care about, and book reviews. One might say the spirit of Dickey is hovering over the journal…
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The Midwest Quarterly CoverThe Midwest Quarterly

Volume 55 Number 2

Winter 2014

Quarterly

Review by Travis Laurence Naught

This all-poetry issue of The Midwest Quarterly was a treat that did not disappoint. I grew up in a rural community, population south of 4000, and we were the county seat: these poems spoke straight to my childhood. As with all good poems, I’m sure there are pieces here that will speak to city folk as well, but the trip down memory lane was outstanding for me. The only gripe I have about the entire issue is that there was no table of contents for easy reference…
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Modern Haiku CoverModern Haiku

Volume 45 Number 2

Summer 2014

Triannual

Review by Denise Hill

Last month I reviewed Frogpond and noted it as one of THE journals for haiku enthusiasts. Modern Haiku is another of THE journals haikuists should be reading. This journal has been in continuous print since 1969, with a masthead of esteemed haiku experts, each a haiku household name: Kay Titus Mormino, Robert Spiess, Lee Gurga, Charles Trumbull, and the current editor, Paul Miller. Modern Haiku publishes all forms, combining haiku and senryu as well as essays…
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Poetry CoverPoetry

Volume 204 Number 4

July/August 2014

Monthly

Review by Brian McKenna

Because the Poetry Foundation’s website is such a fixture of my online reading, buying an issue of Poetry always make me feel like I’m donating to public radio. Lifting an issue from the bookstore shelf and leafing through it, I can almost hear the faintly accusatory voice of a pledge drive broadcaster playing the guilt card, asking, “How often do you find yourself enjoying the vast resource that is the Poetry Foundation website, or sending the articles and poems you find…
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River Styx CoverRiver Styx

Numbers 91 & 92

2014

Triannual

Review by Brian McKenna

With this double-issue blowout, River Styx celebrates its thirty-ninth year (“because who wants to turn 40?”) as one of the country’s most “thoughtful yet accessible” literary ambassadors. Boasting a long list of notable and returning contributors and brimming with poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and art of great depth that’s also deeply entertaining, this issue is River Styx turned up to eleven. Nowhere is this more evident than in the issue’s poetry. Featuring new poems from…
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Wicked Banshee Press CoverWicked Banshee Press

Issue 1

Spring 2014

Quarterly [o]

Review by Kirsten McIlvenna

After a brief interview with Denise Frohman and a note from Women of the World Poetry Slam Host City Chair, Wicked Banshee Press (a brand new online journal) plunges right into the poetry, and it doesn’t fool around with any feet-wetting. The very first poem sends a strong emotional sting with Tara Betts’s “Throwing Away a Wedding Dress.” Describing it as “dented and dew-dotted, dried / fondant, crumbling and collapsed / in loose folds,” a metaphor for the entire marriage…
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Your Impossible Voice CoverYour Impossible Voice

Issue 4

Summer 2014

Quarterly [e-pub]

Review by Kirsten McIlvenna

Your Impossible Voice, a newer quarterly e-publication, has taken strides to give a great literary experience through the professional and engaging look of their website to the well-formatted work of their publication. As far as the work goes? Well, let's explore. Karen An-hwei Lee’s “Letter from Orange County: Twelve Fragments” falls under the category of nonfiction in this issue, and is a beautifully written homage to a past place, or rather to a current place…
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