Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

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Review: James Geary

December 21, 2017

James Geary, who is probably the world’s most recognizable and popular expert on the aphorism, has posted a nice review of QUICK on his eponymous website. I had the opportunity to perform with Geary this spring at the first International Conference on the Aphorism in Hartford, CT.

“The idea and experience of epiphany is perhaps the best organizational principle through which to approach George’s work. His aphorisms are carefully distilled tinctures, administered with pinpoint accuracy and utmost efficacy across a wide range of issues and concerns, including the subject of epiphanies… Quick rewards readers with memorable insights and imagery, delivered with grace and precision.”

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Review: Harper’s

September 8, 2016

There’s a neat review in Harper’s of the anthology of aphorisms, Short Flights, in which I appear alongside some of the best working aphorists out there. A small quote from the introduction to my selection is included:

A fair number of aphorisms seek to justify or explain the form itself. Nietzsche: “It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what everyone else says in a whole book — what everyone else does not say in a whole book.” George Murray: “I describe them as poems without all the poetry getting in the way. But, for all I know, philosophers might describe them as thoughts without all the philosophy getting in the way.”

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Review: PRISM International

April 26, 2016

There’s another nice review of Diversion in PRISM magazine out of BC. Order a copy here.

“Diversion positions itself in conversation with the work of poets such as Rachel Zolf, Kathryn Mockler and Sam Riviere who have been utilizing technological filters and search engines to organize and experiment with the vast array of information we have access to in the contemporary world. By contrast, Murray asks what happens to a text when filters used to organize or arrange information are removed. Mimicking the constant stream of divergent data we are presented with everyday on our cellphones, computers, and televisions, he leaves the conceit of filtering up to the reader.”

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Review: Atlantic Books Today

January 21, 2016

Diversion gets a nice little review from Joan Sullivan in Atlantic Books Today. There’s no link online, so here’s a photo of it.  It’s available for sale at most bookstores, or online. Try McNally Robinson or Type Books if you want to support independent bookstores. Or even Chapters and Amazon if you don’t.

abt review

 

 

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Reviews: Winnipeg and St. John’s

October 6, 2015

The first two reviews for Diversion are in, and they’re great! Jonathan Ball’s poetry column in the Winnipeg Free Press gives a few paragraphs, claiming:

“Murray jostles between rage and comedy… Murray doesn’t simply mimic online chatter. Each line is self-contained, but also scaffolds its poem. Diversion may seem tailor-made for devotees of social media, but it’s actually for people who hate social media.”

In The Overcast, Shannon Webb-Campbell does a sort of profile review and writes:

“Instead of harbouring poetry’s quiet emotions, Diversion harnesses anger, bliss, shame, and awe.”

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Review: The National Post

June 3, 2014

The National Post Books Editor Mark Medley reviews Wow Wow and Haw Haw as part of his video podcast series “The Small Picture”. Very nice for Wow Wow!

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News: Wow Wow and Haw Haw Previewed at Quill

January 24, 2014

My first book for children, Wow Wow and Haw Haw, gets a nice mention in the spring preview at the Canadian industry paper Quill & Quire. Following a previous mention in Publisher’s Weekly, I hope this means all the librarians now know it’s going to be a thing this spring!

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Review: Whiteout in Canadian Literature

May 6, 2013

There’s  a somewhat academically dense review of Whiteout in Canadian Literature. It’s nice to have one so late in the book’s life, though. Buy the book here.

If Murray successfully translates fourteenth-century Italian poetry into present-day Newfoundland, he likewise telegraphs local vernacular as vital element of lyric tradition, whether in the sing-song rhymes of Song for a Memory (The old men are proud of their jukebox picks, / Humming in time where the words come unfixed) or the philosophical familiarity of St. John’s (Your future could lean in that door and you / might not recognize it as anything / but the next in another series of nows). The collection’s two Ligature poems—Ligature ( ) and Ligature (&)—succinctly articulate Murray’s poetic in Whiteout (a condition during which sea, sky, and land have no discernible lines of demarcation). Signalling the poet’s fealty to linguistic marks and sounds, these poems employ ligature as metaphorical conjunction of two bodies come together as something resembling an us that just might make a shape of life.

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Review: Year End at The Telegram

January 10, 2013

The Telegram, St. John’s daily newspaper, name checks yours truly and Whiteout in its year-end roundup. Thanks again to Chad Pelley, a big supporter of my work.

To conclude, I’ll point out that, numerically speaking, 2012 has been a year of poetry for our province. Normally we see works of fiction and non-fiction rolling out of here by the barrel, but this year it’s been a steady supply of poetry, and among them, new works from two of my favourite poets: “Whiteout” by George Murray, and “Perfection,” by Patrick Warner. Both poets tackle the sorts of fleeting thoughts we all have, but they have a gifted knack for making the potency of a fleeting thought or observation explode with meaning. You needn’t be a poetry scholar to enjoy their work.

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Reviews: Best-of-Year Roundups

January 7, 2013

Whiteout has made the end-of-year roundups at two venues: Salty Ink and The National Post. Salty Ink has been a longtime supporter of the book and my work, and that support is essential and appreciated. But having the National Post’s poetry columnist Michael Lista say Whiteout flew a little too much under the radar for his taste is awfully surprising and nice.

From Salty Ink:

“As expected, Whiteout offers Murray’s prophet-like insight into humanity alongside calculated diction that leaves no word out of place and no poem one line too long. And if what I’m saying is bordering on  hyperbole, go Google reviews of his work — there’s an uncommon authenticity in peoples’ praise of the poignancy of his work. He has an uncanny knack for metaphorically rich writing that captures all the hidden meaning and truth a fleeting moment can hold — in a way that never feels like poetry so much as a well-worded  moment of revelation any of us could have, if we had his words and patience to craft them. There’s something unique about his poems, and more importantly, something powerful that stirs readers, poem after poem after poem.” – Chad Pelley

From National Post:

“I think this is Murray’s best book. It’s short, lean and long-gestating, and the poems sport a lightly worn formality that feels organic, never decorative. Some of the poems are a decade old, and so the collection — which ranges geographically from an ash-covered New York on Sept. 11 to a snowed-under present-day St. John’s — feels expertly rehearsed and crash-tested. But even though Whiteout is a long time coming, I think it came too hot on the heels of his last book, which was published two years ago. But it’s definitely worthy of wider attention.” – Michael Lista

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