The Oberlin Review

Book Nook Reviews: Lasser and Kornblith’s

Book Nook Reviews: Lasser and Kornblith’s “Elusive Utopia”

December 6, 2019

In the third grade I, like every other elementary-school student in Oberlin’s public schools, received a copy of an Oberlin history textbook. The book portrayed Oberlin as a utopian community that had transcended issues of gender and race from its inception. Yet my lived experiences and the stories I heard growing up as an Oberlin resident often contradicted this idealistic narrative. I was introduced to the monograph Elusive Utopia: The Struggle for Racial Equality in Oberlin, Ohio last semest...

Book Nook: Ill Will

Book Nook: Ill Will

October 11, 2019

 We’re back with Book Nook, our Review book club! For the month of October, the Arts & Culture Section will feature a book written by Obies or about the town of Oberlin. You have the chance to read along with us and submit your own review that encapsulates your thoughts about the book. All you have to do is write a few paragraphs — roughly 300 words — with your opinions and send it to [email protected] You may be published alongside some of our other readers. This month, we’ll...

Book Nook Monthly Reviews: Alison Bechdel's

Book Nook Monthly Reviews: Alison Bechdel’s “Fun Home”

September 27, 2019

Kate Fishman I read Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic twice, once in high school at my mom’s recommendation, and once after getting to Oberlin, when it was on the syllabus for my first-year seminar. I think Alison Bechdel is one of the most touted celebrity Obies because she did something that feels quintessentially Oberlin: She wrote a memoir that was not just a memoir but a graphic novel, and one about queerness at that. Not only that, but Fun Home was turned into a musical!  The book is riddled ...

Book Review: “The Fork, The Witch, and the Worm”

Kabir Karamchandani, Staff Writer

March 8, 2019

Christopher Paolini, the author of the popular Inheritance cycle, is known for taking a while to write books — so when he released a collection of short stories titled The Fork, the Witch, and the Worm without much warning at the end of 2018, most fans were pleasantly surprised. As one of Oberlin’s many fantasy nerds, I grew up reading Paolini and got a copy of his new book as soon as it was released.  The collection was a great read, providing a much-needed return to the world of Alagaesia and the characters from Paolini’s first series. Yet it fails to live up to the standard of the original series because of the limits of its format — the short stories don’t provide the same in-depth look at the nuance of ...

New Pullman Novel Fails to Live Up to Earlier Work

Kirsten Heuring, Staff Writer

March 30, 2018

I attended Catholic school for 12 years, and my first act of heresy involved the His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman. A high fantasy series rooted in the tradition of Milton’s Paradise Lost, the trilogy is set in a parallel world dominated by a powerful theocracy that suppresses dissent and free thought, commonly referred to as the Church. The world is full of wonderful details, like souls that live outside of people’s bodies in animal forms, powerful armored bears, and magic particles that glide and swirl through the air. But the series is also a scathing critique of the Catholic Church, and in 2007, the Catholic League actively campaigned against the first book in the series, The Golden Compass (titled ...

Tamora Pierce Pens Triumphant Return to Tortall Universe

Julia Peterson, Arts & Culture Editor

February 16, 2018

After a long hiatus and much anticipation, acclaimed fantasy author Tamora Pierce has finally released a new book set in her Tortall universe, Tempests and Slaughter. The book is the first in her long-awaited new series, The Numair Chronicles. Pierce, whose books in the Tortall universe have frequently enjoyed long stays on New York Times bestseller lists and have earned a wide variety of prestigious awards, has proven time and again that her imagination is bound only by the careful structure that she weaves through her writing. Each of her many series is cohesive with and enriched by every other. With Tempests and Slaughter, she breaks away from a number of the patterns that she set in her previous works, offering ch...

Established 1874.