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What We're Reading

The Book Review

07-04-2023 • 27 mins

As you might guess, the folks who work at the Book Review are always reading — and many of them like to juggle three or four books at once. In this episode, Gilbert Cruz talks to the editors Tina Jordan and Greg Cowles about what they’ve been reading and enjoying, and then, in honor of National Poetry Month, interviews Cowles — who, in addition to about a million other things, edits the Book Review's poetry coverage — about how he came to love it.

“I’ve always loved good sentences and surprising language,” Cowles says. “A novel has room — and is even required — to have some slack language in it. If every sentence was perfectly chiseled and honed and used surprising metaphors, you wouldn’t have the patience to stick with it. But poetry, because it’s so distilled, requires that; any slack language stands out and would ruin a poem.”