Annual literary journal that features the very best in poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and art.
In the opening pages of Colum McCann’s new novel Transatlantic, two veterans of the Great War meet for the first time and recognize one another as kindred spirits. “Alcock and Brown took one look at each other and it was immediately understood that they both needed a clean slate,” McCann writes. “The obliteration of memory.”
Readers familiar with this particular novelist should pause here for a hearty chuckle. The obliteration of memory? Good luck, in McCann World. Here, as in his last book (the rapturously praised Let the Great World Spin), memory is utterly resistant to obliteration. It is, in fact, put forward as our last and only bulwark against the vagaries of grief. Our ability to embrace memory is what allows us to continue, despite all that threatens to pull us asunder, from our communities or our families or even from ourselves. The world spins. We stumble on. It is enough,as McCann’s last book noted on its final page.