Alice Blue Reviews posted some microreviews on their blog today, including write-ups on: Portrait of the Artist as a Software Engineer by Maged Zaher, Bird Any Damn Kind by Lucas Farrell, and our two latest books. This is what Amber Nelson had to say:
Ordinary Sun by Matthew Henriksen
I am biased as a long-time fan of Cannibal (now sadly defunct) who met Matthew Henriksen and adored him instantly. But I think, even if I didn't know him, this book just out from Black Ocean, and just read by me yesterday, is one of the best books of the year, if not this decade. Talk about being put in your place. Henriksen gets it. He gets it. I mean, the book is good all the way through, but then to land on that last poem, that title poem, that at the end you just kinda go fuck and then you just have to read it all over again because you realize, up until that point, you didn't know anything. But he knew and he is schooling you.
Girl Without Arms by Brandon Shimoda
Also just out from Black Ocean, and just read by me this morning and is also one of the best books of the year. (These two books by Black Ocean could contend for Best Book of the Year probably.) I published Shimoda some 8000 years ago in alice blue. Talk about growth. I loved his work then but he just keeps growing and changing and these he writes this book that is at times just plain violent or gross or brash and then gets just freaking unreasonably beautiful. It crescendoes in the middle and slips back down. It is filled with quiet in the middle of a racing, violent language. I left this book changed, stepping off the bus into a weird new world.