“Florida,” by Lauren Groff

Reviewed by Bonnie Armstrong Groff’s only short story collection, Florida, is an example of her exploration of individuals pitted against not only society but also their own conflicted and, often, unarticulated desires. These stories present themes of domesticity versus wildness; nature as uncaring and uncontrollable; claustrophobic security versus unmoored rootlessness; and Florida as both a […]

Allen Mendenhall Interviews Douglas Dell, Author of “Deep and Dirty”

AM: “The funny thing about The South,” says the narrator in the prologue to your debut novel, Deep and Dirty, “is that it’s pretty, an odd choice of word but highly practical, take away the disasters sitting on almost every other corner and you’ll notice nature has this way of battling human influence by blotting out […]

“Key West—A Lush and Magical place for Cozy Mysteries,” by Claire Hamner Matturro

Review essay by Claire Hamner Matturro  Key West. Ah, just read the words in a mystery novel and a certain whirl and whoosh of coconut-scented, warm, moist air seems to fly off the pages. From the lush tropical landscape and the complex history to the raucous party atmosphere, from the old-world elegance of the Hemingway […]

April Read of the Month: “Oh, Florida: How America’s Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country,” by Craig Pittman

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro With Oh, Florida, a book that defies easy categorization, award-winning journalist Craig Pittman has penned a definite winner. Oh, Florida is nonfiction, though its legends and lore add a devilish charm and a wicked-fast pace more commonly associated with Florida thrillers and their motifs of death, crime and gore; their […]

“Burials,” by Mary Anna Evans

Reviewed by Claire Hamner Matturro Burials, the tenth Dr. Faye Longchamp-Mantooth archaeological mystery by master-writer Mary Anna Evans, begins with a bang. Literally. Faye and her client are hiding under a pick-up in Oklahoma as somebody shoots at them. Though the precise motive and identity of the shooter will not be revealed until the end, […]

“The Pink House,” by Trish MacEnulty

Reviewed by Donna Meredith Trish MacEnulty’s smooth delivery of four very different female viewpoints in The Pink House creates a rich reading experience to savor like a tasty casserole. Each narrator has a compelling story and unique problems that meld into a riveting whole. The action centers around a women’s prison in North Florida, a […]

“It’s Not Like I Knew Her,” by Pat Spears

Reviewed by Donna Meredith It’s Not Like I Knew Her, by Pat Spears, shines as a classic coming-of-age story exploring a young woman’s poignant awakening of forbidden desire. This Tallahassee writer and Florida State University graduate wrangles words with the clarity and style of a true wordsmith. Her sentences percolate with the right rhythms and […]

SLR Welcomes New Contributor Pat Spears

Pat Spears is the author of two novels: Dream Chasers (Twisted Road Publications, 2014) and It’s Not Like I Knew Her (Twisted Road Publications, 2016). Her short stories have appeared in numerous journals, including the North American Review, Appalachian Heritage, Seven Hills Review, and anthologies titled Law and Disorder from Main Street Rag, Bridges and Borders from […]