Hard Choices: An ""Iowa Review"" Reader

David Hamilton, Editor University of Iowa Press $27.5 (490p) ISBN 978-0-87745-536-3
Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 1995, the Iowa Review has built a reputation as a leading American literary quarterly. Current editor Hamilton has culled selections from throughout the magazine's history for this anthology, which will be of special interest to followers of poetry. The volume includes strong poems by such established poets as Charles Simic, Tess Gallagher, Adrienne Rich, W.S. Merwin, James Tate and Donald Hall, as well as standouts from lesser-knowns such as Jon Anderson, Pattiann Rogers and Rochelle Nameroff, offering readers a lively sampler of American poetry over the past quarter century. Unfortunately, the fiction fares less well. Despite solid work from established masters of the short story such as Robert Coover, Raymond Carver and Charles Baxter, along with an especially strong story, ""Wonderland,"" by C.S. Godshalk, the bulk of the fiction does not seem especially worthy of anthologizing. Nor does it succeed in conveying a full, cohesive sense of the development of recent American fiction. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/04/1996
Release date: 03/01/1996
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