Books Acquired Recently

Clare, Eli. Brilliant Imperfection: Grappling with Cure. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2017.

Clare’s book Exile and Pride is an essential disabilities studies text, and when I saw that his new book had come out I ordered it immediately.

Cunningham, Agnes, and Gordon Friesen. Red Dust and Broadsides: A Joint Autobiography. Edited by Ronald D. Cohen. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 1999.

Friesen wrote the first important Mennonite novel in the U.S., Flamethrowers, and then fell off of the literary map until some relatively recent scholarly efforts to examine his work. I just found out that he co-wrote this autobiography with his wife, who was an important folk singer. My obsession with Mennonite literature compelled me to buy it right away.

Halberstam, J. Jack [as Judith Halberstam]. In a Queer Time and Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives. New York: New York University Press, 2005.

I enjoyed Halberstam’s book The Queer Art of Failure and frequently encounter citations of In a Queer Time and Place, so I thought I should finally buy it and read it for myself.

Lowrey, Sassafras. A Little Queermas Carol. Brooklyn, NY: PoMo Freakshow Press, 2016.

—. Roving Pack. Brooklyn, NY: PoMo Freakshow Press, 2012.

I immediately ordered all of Lowrey’s fiction after seeing hir read at AWP a few weeks ago. I loved hir novel Lost Boi, a BDSM retelling of Peter Pan, and I’ve already read and enjoyed A Little Queermas Carol, which is a BDSM retelling of A Christmas Carol.

McInerney, Jay. Bright Lights, Big City. New York: Vintage Books, 1984.

I received this book as a Valentine’s Day gift. I have heard of McInerney, but never read any of his work, so I look forward to experiencing it.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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