Another entry in the overcrowded genre of grief memoir, A Song for the River is beautifully written but plumbs all-too-familiar territory.
How many grief memoirs is enough grief memoirs? That would be an absurdly unfair question to ask an author, of course, but I’m starting to think that a reader...Read More
Lacy Johnson’s lyrical new book of essays grapples with sexual assault, environmental disasters and Donald Trump.
In one of the essays collected in her new book, The Reckonings, Houston writer Lacy Johnson recounts the ancient Greek story of Philomela, an Athenian princess ...Read More
Ben Fountain’s new book of essays chronicles the ascent of Trumpism with a keen eye for the past, present and future.
The rise of Donald J. Trump repeatedly confounded political scholars, reporters, pundits and campaign operatives alike. Time after time, those who closely follo...Read More
In this year's Texas Observer Short Story Contest winner, Daniel Zima, publisher/editor of a Czech-language newspaper, delivers papers to his elderly neighbors in a nursing home while awaiting a buyer he suspects will never appear.
If you’re considering entering the 2019 Observer story contest, you could do worse than to write a story about a small Texas publication fighting an uphill ba...Read More
Journalist Sarah Smarsh’s book encapsulates what it’s like to grow up in the forgotten farm fields of America, artfully mixing anecdote with political context and societal commentary.
Having fun during a Kansas winter, as Sarah Smarsh writes in her new memoir, Heartland, requires creativity: “Lots of snow, no hills.” In one memora...Read More
More people are displaced than ever before — nearly 69 million. The scale of that crisis is hard to grasp, but visitors to One to Another will see it in a new light.
Ours is an era of mass displacement. At no other point in history have so many people around the world been forced to leave home. The United Nations High Commis...Read More
In Jenny Staff Johnson’s “Repeater,” a woman tries to make sense of a murder-suicide next door.
Natalia Sylvester, guest judge for our 2018 short story contest, had this to say about what she looks for in a good story: “The stories that grab me and hold ...Read More
Tracy Daugherty’s new biography of The Gay Place author Billy Lee Brammer is part poetic ode, part oral history — and always a wild ride.
The greatest novel ever written about Austin was penned by a man from Dallas, and it did not mention the capital city by name. Still, when Billy Lee Brammer’s...Read More