Best Review of They Don't Kill You Because They're Hungry, They Kill You Because They're Full (lannan Literary Selections):
Most helpful customer reviews 4 of 4 people found the following review helpful. A Good Thing And A Bad Thing By MinnesotaMind Bibbins's poetry is wild and smart and very funny. If you're a lover of clear narrative or lyric poetry, poems which tell of an encounter in a doctor's waiting room, or paint the image of a young woman gracefully pushing her wheelchair through a parking lot in the rain (see Ted Kooser), these poems are not for you. Bibbins lives on the edge of traditional intelligibility. His poems are the children of Strand and Bly, Simic and Young: surreal, intuitive, inventive, and sometimes frustrating. Many times, the reader is supposed to be frustrated. Many times, Bibbins's goal is to literally CREATE frustration amuck as much as mirror it. As the note on the back of the book points out, "these poems counter dread with wit, chaos with clarity (and sometimes more chaos)."So why four stars instead of five? This was a really good book. Many of these poems are great. They won lots of awards and acclaim. But ultimately, for me these poems live too much on their own surface to LOVE. They are incredibly self-aware, they drip with irony; Bibbins is in NO danger of being called sentimental. But I believe one can develop a poetics too far in the other direction--these poems feel like they were composed by a hyper-kinetic and acute brain unattached to a living, breathing body. It's how I tend to feel sometimes when I read David Foster Wallace's fiction (not his essays notably). So I didn't come away from any of these poems saying "whoa…what an eye he has" or "my goodness, that was beautiful." One finishes a Bibbins poem with a smirk in appreciation of his cleverness and intelligence, and because of what isn't written as much as what is. And that smirk is both a good and bad thing.Oh yeah. I LOVE the title. 6 of 7 people found the following review helpful. This book will kill you dead By Roberto G. Montes Bibbins operates on a curve that tends upwards, carrying all of us with it. This book moves beyond the familiar tropes of sarcasm and irony that inundate us on a daily basis to reach a feverish beauty. Viciously funny and despairingly thoughtful, THEY DON'T KILL YOU will fill your life before becoming it. 1 of 2 people found the following review helpful. Important and humorous By James Kelly Contemporary poetry sometimes is lacking in playfulness and humor. The poems of Mark Bibbins are playful and funny, even at their darkest and most important. Publishers Weekly chose this book as one of the best poetry books of 2014 and it's easy to see why. It has a lot to say about our age of information bombardment and is highly recommended. See all 4 customer reviews...
About the Author Mark Bibbins is the author of The Dance of No Hard Feelings; The Anxiety of Coincidence, a digital-only chapbook; and Sky Lounge, which received a Lambda Literary Award. He teaches in the graduate writing programs at The New School, where he co-founded LIT magazine, and at Columbia University. Bibbins is the editor of the poetry section of The Awl and the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship in poetry. His poems have appeared in Poetry, The Paris , Boston , Tin House, The Best American Poetry, and Legitimate Dangers: American Poets of the New Century.
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