“A Force in American Literature”: Matt Bell’s “A Tree or a Person or a Wall” Reviewed

Matt Bell has become a force in American literature and this is in no small part due to his flexibility in style. His latest collection of stories A Tree or a Person or a Wall is perhaps the most comprehensive example of his stylistic diversity. The collection begins with the title story “A Tree or a Person or a Wall,” which is a story about a boy that finds himself captive in a room with a rather temperamental albino ape. […]

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Vol.1 Brooklyn’s September 2016 Book Preview

From surreal and disquieting fiction to insightful and disarming essays, many of the books we’re most excited about in September are ones we’ve been waiting to see for a long time. Some are the first books by writers whose work we’ve enjoyed for a while; others collect short fiction from people whose longer-form work has already impressed us. Either way, there are a lot of captivating books due out this September; here are some of the books that have gotten […]

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Matt Bell on “Scrapper,” Detroit, and “How Landscape Has Informed My Imagination”

I’ve been reading and admiring Matt Bell‘s constantly shifting, deeply visceral fiction for years now. (I’ve interviewed him twice before, in 2009 and 2012.) His previous novel In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods was a stark tale of isolation that gradually transformed into a hallucinatory kind of creation story. His new novel, Scrapper, retains that sense of grit and emotional tension, but does so in a much more realistic setting: specifically, contemporary Detroit. In […]

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