City of Belief
Fox Print Books, $16, 242 pp.
Throughout the twentieth century, lively American fiction writers with a social conscience—among them Jean Toomer, William Carlos Williams, Tillie Olsen, and Grace Paley—experimented playfully with new ways to explore the lives of those on the margins of society, and invented clever forms for stories about workers, political protesters, and the poor. That experimental impulse continues today, especially in the fiction of such writers as Sherman Alexie, Edwidge Danticat, and Junot Díaz, even...
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