Posts By: Indy Review

Review- Aimee Nez’s World of Wonders

Reviewed by Alberto Sveum

Aimee Nezhukumatathil’s debut book of essays is an enchanting meeting of a reflective, lyrical study of the Earth, and the author’s personal history and her awe for the natural world.

From conversing with cardinals in the Midwest to laughing along with bonnet macaques in southern India, Nezhukumatathil has found joy in the beings of the world since early childhood. These celebratory moments—looking for birds with her two young sons, watching the fireflies at the Great Smoky Mountains—bring forth so much light. However, such celebration, such wonder, is also met with some of the darker parts of existence and questions of how humans treat this shared habitat and one another. “Where does one start to take care of these living things amid the dire and daily news of climate change?” she asks. “How can one even imagine us getting back to a place where we know the names of the trees we walk by every single day?” Perhaps it is this childlike wonder itself that can show us how to better treat one another and to revere and protect our planet. Even while encountering a nationalist school teacher and seeing the racism her Filipino mother has gone through in her own life and career, the author finds direction in studying the fireflies, the dragon fruits, and the vampire squids surrounding her and the love with which they fill her. It is only right that the enrapturing beauty of the world is brought into focus by Nezhukumatathil’s lyricism and coupled with Fumi Nakamura’s vibrant and beautiful illustrations.

World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments is a triumph of poetic study and a profound display of care.

Milkweed Editions, Sept. 8, 2020, $25.00 hardcover (184p), ISBN: 978-1-57131-365-2.


Alberto Sveum is an MFA graduate from Indiana University Bloomington, where he also served as the Editor-in-Chief of Indiana Review. Lately, he’s been listening to The Pharcyde and Mazzy Star, watching What We Do in the Shadows, and trying to get outside every day.

Interview with 2021 Creative Nonfiction Prize Judge Anna Qu

Indiana Review is accepting submissions for the Creative Nonfiction Prize until October 31st. This year, Anna Qu, author of the memoir Made In China: A Memoir of Love and Labor, will be selecting the winner.

Check out what Anna had to say about sentimentality, the memoir-writing process, and much more in this interview with Creative Nonfiction Editor, Tyler Raso. And then don’t forget to send in your work!

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Announcing the 2021 Don Belton Prize Winner

We are excited to announce the winner and finalists of the 2021 Don Belton Fiction Reading Period, judged by Anjali Sachdeva. Thank you to everyone who submitted their work!

2021 DON BELTON PRIZE WINNER

In This World of Ultraviolet Light by Raul Palma

Raul Palma is an assistant professor of writing at Ithaca College. His work has appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Chattahoochee Review, Greensboro Review, and the Best Small Fiction 2018. His fiction has been supported with fellowships from the CubaOne Foundation, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, the Santa Fe Writer’s Conference, the Sewanee Writer’s Conference, and the Sundress Academy for the Arts. He is, presently, at work on a novel titled A Haunting in Hialeah Gardens.

FINALISTS

A Wild Region by Robin Lovelace

Unmanned Systems by Matt Broaddus

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Call for Submissions: Borders Between Worlds

Whether your worlds are real or imagined, literal or metaphorical, for a special feature in our Summer 2022 issue, we’re seeking work that examines the borders between them. Send us your work about crossing borders, blurred borders, collapsed borders, about living on the edge. Think natural borders, socially constructed and geopolitical borders, or perhaps the space between life and death. Send us your haunted places and portals to fairylands; explore the boundaries that keep out and keep in. Cross the stratosphere, go deep underground, get lost in the wilds. Whatever your borders, wherever your worlds, we want to see them.

Character-driven speculative work is welcome, and we are especially excited by work that engages deeply with place.

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Donate to Our Fund for Black and Indigenous Writers

In our continuing efforts to champion Black and Indigenous voices, we’re giving away free back issues to those who donate $5, $10, $15, or $50—or more, if you’re so inclined! All donations will be put toward covering submission fees for Black and Indigenous writers.

Visit our shop (or click the links above) to donate.