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Book Reviews

YORK DAILY RECORD — VERSIFY
Livin’ the ‘Paper Dream’: York College prof edits lit mag history anthology, by Stacia M. Fleegal, York Daily Record (Nov. 12, 2013)

NEW PAGES
Paper Dreams, review by Kirsten McIlvenna, NewPages.com (Nov. 1, 2013)

POETS’ QUARTERLY
Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine, by Heather Lowery, Poets’ Quarterly (Oct. 11, 2013)

NECESSARY FICTION
“Paper Dreams”, by Curtis Smith, Necessary Fiction (Sept. 9, 2013)

HTMLGIANT
“Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine”, by Carlo Matos, HTMLGIANT (Sept. 6, 2013)

SUMMERSET REVIEW
“Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine – compiled and edited by Travis Kurowski”, by Nick Sweeney, Summerset Review (Summer Issue, 2013)

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
“Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine”, pages 66-67, Publishers Weekly (June 10, 2013)

PORTLAND BOOK REVIEW
“Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine”, by Lori A. May, Portland Book Review (June 12, 2013)

FOREWORD REVIEWS
“Paper Dreams: Writers and Editors on the American Literary Magazine”, by Karen Rigby, Foreword Reviews (July 18, 2013)

THE PRACTICING WRITER
“Article/Lessons Learned: Paper Dreams”, by Erika Dreifus, The Practicing Writer Newsletter (July 30, 2013)

Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) magazine (October 2013)

Paper Dreams is not the last word on literary magazines, but it is a thorough discussion of the history, the transformation in print and online, and the significance of what J.D. McClatchy calls “the prime archeological dig of the American imagination” (Quotations, p. 405). A roughly chronological compendium, it devotes a section to writers’ and editors’ views and includes four representative manifestos from the magazines’ development. Like the magazines themselves, the writing can be uneven. It opens well with Billy Collins’s poem “Literary Magazines.” Selections that review swaths of time like Paul Bixler’s “Little Magazine, What Now?” are largely lists of names and titles, serving a purpose for those needing a survey, but dry reading for those wanting more. Pieces like Megan Garr’s “The Literary Economy Is Pathetic,” do better, capturing a wider issue by filtering it through the lens of a single publication. Garr addresses money problems through Versal, a magazine compiled by English-speaking expatriates living in the Netherlands.

The book is aimed at adults with an interest in the subject or at teachers and students compelled to be interested. Teachers and librarians will appreciate Nicholas Ripatrazone’s advice for using literary magazines in the high school English curriculum. The articles, especially the four manifestos and pieces dealing with feminist and minority involvement, will offer challenging nonfiction a la Common Core Learning Standards, and the samples of cover art will work well in discussions of visual devices. Little magazines will no doubt appreciate much-needed new subscribers, too. — Donna L Phillips, VOYA