Recent news of Geist writers and artists, gathered from here and there. Anything else we ought to know about? Tell us at email@example.com.
While writing about Methodist Hatchet, Ken Babstock’s latest collection of poems (Anansi), a reviewer called Babstock “the best Canadian poet of his generation.” Quill & Quire wrote that Babstock “wants more out of poetry, and is determined to produce language that sings in a new frequency.” The Globe and Mail wrote: “the vocabulary is lush, peppered with Canadian gems such as Moosonee and Tecumseh, but also Chekhov, Zizus and PVC.” Rover Arts said that Methodist Hatchet was “almost a barrage of language, poems sometimes so thick with sound it’s difficult for the reader to find a way in.”
This Magazine, referring to Hal Niedzviecki’s short story collection Look Down, This Is Where It Must Have Happened (City Lights), said that the author “repeatedly draws attention to the fact that in the abundance-of-information age, everyone’s a kind of hypocrite, but the message is ultimately lost in the insufferable exchanges of characters who can’t seem to think for themselves.” The Globe and Mail wrote: “unfortunately, these stories are not particularly good art. Niedzviecki is a cultural observer . . . and one senses that these stories are attempts at putting some halogens on our quotidian yet bewildering late capitalistic, everything-goes culture.” According to Quill & Quire, “the stories here are raw, energetic, and, like the author’s 2001 novel Ditch, tend to focus on individual moments of intensity, often leaving the connective tissue between scenes implied.”
On Evelyn Lau’s Living Under Plastic (Oolichan), ABCBookWorld wrote that there are “many scintillating lines in this collection [that] show Lau has lost none of her former poetry skills.” The Globe and Mail wrote that Living Under Plastic “offers readers a fleeting glimpse of that which endures despite the diurnal dejectamenta pooling in the deluge of contemporary existence.” The Georgia Straight opined that “Lau is gifted with eloquent precision, able to convey entire experiences through single words and exquisitely crafted lines.”