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    Forthcoming poetry by Ruth Naylor

    July 31, 2013

    A Family Affair, a poetry collection by Ruth Naylor, is scheduled to release this fall with Finishing Line Press. Although this chapbook's subject matter is Naylor's own family relationships, in many ways, these poems express a universal experience.

    "With these poems Naylor illuminates the complicated terrain of family life.Her courageous telling invites us to bend with her as she kneels down "tocheck what life had done" and to see how a "spine straight as Biblical law"
    can soften in response to need and love. This collection holds our commonache for the other."
    -Jean Janzen, author of …

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    July 30, 2013

    Submissions deadline: September 3, 2013

    Publication Date: December 2013

    We are looking for new, unpublished work on any subject from writers and artists who self-define as Mennonites, whether practicing, declined, lapsed or resistant; we also accept writing and visual art by non-Mennonites about Mennonites.


    Poetry: Up to 30 lines (preferred)

    Fiction and non-fiction: Up to 2,500 words

    Artwork: Black-and-white artwork including high contrast photographs that reproduce well in the magazine printing process. A limited number of colour images are used in each issue, including a cover image and images for an art feature inside.

    Rhubarb also publishes …

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    Indiana poems by Shari Wagner released

    July 29, 2013

    Shari Wagner's second book of poetry, The Harmonist at Nightfall: Poems of Indiana, has just been released by Bottom Dog Press. Wagner's collection explores the Midwest's natural beauty and offers a fresh perspective on a landcape many of us are familiar with.

    "This book you're holding represents years' worth of discipline and labor, of time and travel and, as you'll discover, the pure joy of attention and love of language. The thing that makes a poet undertake a particular project is a mystery, finally. One day Shari Wagner was called to understand something, and the journey she decided …

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    Poetry collection by Eileen R. Kinch

    July 14, 2013

    Finishing Line Press has recently released Gathering the Silence, a chapbook of poems by Eileen R. Kinch, a writer and editor in Lancaster Country, Pennsylvania.

    This beautiful debut collection claims a space for silence by way of utterance: testimony so strong it sears the speaker’s lips, lifts in song, or finally falls to a hush. Kinch enacts the old association between poetry and the furrowed field preserved in the etymology of 'verse': vertere. Her lines turn as the plowman turns the row. 'Fields' articulates her personal and elegant ars poetica: The rows are straight, yet curving with/the contours …

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    The Origin of Feces: A top nonfiction pick

    July 8, 2013

    David Waltner-Toews's The Origin of Feces: What Excrement Tells Us About Evolution, Ecology, and a Sustainable Society (ECW Press, May 2013) has earned critical acclaim from Publisher's Weekly and Huffington Post. Now Globe Books has named the book a top nonfiction read this summer.

    The Origin of Feces may sound like a bathroom read, and although there are plenty of puns, this book comes with a serious message. Critics have drawn comparisons to Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma and Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond.

    Book description:
    "An entertaining and enlightening exploration of why waste matters, this cultural …

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    Sofia Samatar's 'A Stranger in Olondria' published

    June 23, 2013

    In April 2013, Small Beer Press released Sofia Samatar's first book, A Stranger in Olondria.

    The critically acclaimed novel follows Jevick, a pepper-merchant's son, on his ghost-riddled adventure to the distant land of Olondria.

    Samatar, an American of Somali and Swiss German Mennonite background, wrote A Stranger in Olondria while teaching English in South Sudan.

    “Samatar’s sensual descriptions create a rich, strange landscape, allowing a lavish adventure to unfold that is haunting and unforgettable.”
    Library Journal (*starred review*)

    “It’s the rare first novel with no unnecessary parts – and, in terms of its elegant language, its …

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    New poetry by Joanne Lehman

    June 19, 2013

    Finishing Line Press has released the chapbook Driving in the Fog, the second book of poetry by Joanne Lehman.

    This engaging poetry collection embraces ambiguity and poses more questions than answers.

    Though many of the poems are set in rural northeastern Ohio, Lehman doesn't limit herself to that landscape; she also includes personal narratives and imaginative retellings of biblical stories.

    “ …Lehman’s linguistic tones deepen like winter seeds in the fields of central Ohio. . ; the speaker of these poems travels through wintry landscapes, and interrogates, like Job, the nature of suffering, the fruits of aging, separation, and …

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    First novel by Jessica Penner released

    June 16, 2013

    Foxhead Books has published Jessica Dawn Penner's debut novel, Shaken in the Water. Set in Kansas in the early 1900s, Penner's compelling story follows the life of Agnes, a Mennonite woman born with "a birthmark known in Low German as Tieja Kjoaw, the Tiger's Scar." Reviewer Rudy Wiebe comments, "The reality of the world Jessica Penner creates in 'Shaken in the Water' is never quite what it appears to be: love can so swiftly shift-shape into hatred, rage into compassion, understanding into rejection and longing. But for the reader there is always the Voice calling, 'Herein!'—'Come in!'"

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    Biography of folk poet written by Melvin D. Epp

    June 16, 2013

    The Petals of a Kansas Sunflower features the poetry of Marie Harder Epp, a village poet from a Kansas Mennonite community. Her son, Melvin D. Epp, translated her works from German to English for this volume. He presents the poetry within her engaging personal story as well as the larger Anabaptist historical context.

    "Epp weaves a fascinating montage of stories, photos, and personal reminiscences that frame the collected poems of his mother, a remarkable and strong woman who, as a farm wife on the Kansas prairies, reared eight children and still found time to reflect on the rugged beauty and …

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    New book of poems by Todd Davis

    June 13, 2013

    In the Kingdom of the Ditch, Todd Davis's fourth book of poems, has just been published by Michigan State University Press. Davis has also published a chapbook, Household of Water, Moon, and Snow: The Thoreau Poems, parts of which are included in this volume. In this review, Larry Smith calls these poems "lyric meditations on the way life and the world turns," comparing Davis to poets Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry.