Sonder Reads | Alexis M. Smith's Glaciers & Tina May Hall's The Physics of Imaginary Obj

At The Sonder Review, we LOVE to read. And while this should probably not come as a surprise to you considering we are, after all, a literary review, what might be surprising is that between keeping up with the submissions queue, interviewing brilliant authors, and putting together our first issue, we have still managed to find the time to read for FUN! So, in honor of always remembering to read for pleasure, we want to welcome you to Sonder Read’s – a blog series dedicated to celebrating all of the remarkable voices which have altered our vision and battered our senses, which have stirred our reason and restructured our selves.

Delivered through strikingly poignant and precise writing, Glaciers, Alexis M. Smith’s debut novel, maps the delicate geography of our lives. Smith’s prose is tactile – spare and intimate. A crisp and lyrical voice, quietly deliberate, which elegantly captures the sharp echo of our youth and narrow, shifting precipice of our present. Glaciers is a gently crafted tale of longing – of the shape of our history and the quiet promise of our future – in which Amsterdam is dreamed of, childhood is explored on Alaskan glaciers, and love is learned through vintage dresses and damaged books. It is a story told in moments – the childhood taste of a glacier, names written in borrowed library books, and cross-sections of other people’s stories. A graceful narrative, charting the fractured boundaries and fragile collisions of what was, what is, and what could be.

Tina May Hall’s collection of short stories, The Physics of Imaginary Objects, is utterly captivating. Full of curious events and peculiar visions, disarmingly intimate, wondrous and profound, each of Hall’s stories is a singular event, a startling and inspired glance into the very structure of our humanity. A love affair stops the rain. The death of a sister is mourned in boiled eggs. A severed finger points to the divine. Paper-thin girls learn from the shape of their bones. Hall’s voice is powerful and unrelenting. Her prose is shaped with precision – language that fastens to the heart and burrows under the skin, language that is meant to be held, shivering, on the tongue. The Physics of Imaginary Objects gives us storytelling at its finest, visceral and immense, an entire existence revealed in the slightest instance, the simplest sliver of a life.

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