New Book Review: “To the Bones” by Valerie Nieman, in Appalachian Review

Hi, friends.

It’s been a while. Again.

For my family and me, time has both sped up and seemed suspended or slow duringareviewbookreview the year and a half of pandemic life. I know we’re not alone. Like many of you, I thought we’d be somewhere back to “normal” by now. As I type, I’ve been quarantining at home with my 8 year-old daughter, who contracted Covid-19 at school. She is thankfully, fine now, but it’s been a frustrating and scary process. We long for people to be good neighbors. We are tired.

Which is to say, because of the world in which we’re all living, and the unruliness of our pandemic summer, I missed the fact that an essay of mine was published in the Spring Issue of Appalachian Review: a book review of Valerie Nieman‘s literary thriller, To the Bones (West Virginia University Press, 2019).

West Virginia coal country. A burning river. An old house. A hint of zombie. This is not my usual read, but I was immediately immersed in this wild and dark world, rooting for its people.

bookreview2Appalachian Review is truly a “literary sanctuary,” highlighting work from emerging and established writers across Appalachia and beyond. Past contributors include folks like Wendell Berry, Crystal Wilkinson, Wiley Cash, Barbara Kingsolver, Silas House, Ron Rash, and many more. You’ll never regret subscribing.

The fact that I forgot my review had been published should tell you everything about our pandemic life, and the state of my brain.

To the Bones is a thrilling supernatural read, and especially perfect as we deepen into Autumn and near Hallowe’en.




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