Issue 43 Editorial: The Critical Nib with Emma Lee

The three reviews in this issue act as a reminder we very much live in a global village. Jacob Ross’s thriller ‘Black Rain Falling’ is set in the Caribbean but underlines the global nature of the drugs trade, a scourge to some but a needed income for others and the balancing act of policing. The police both need the cooperation of the people they police even when it conflicts with the need for natural justice. Nathaneal O’Reilly’s ‘(Un)belonging’ is a poetry collection from an Australian who has spent extended periods living in England, Ireland, Germany, Ukraine and the US, giving him a viewpoint from which to observe living patterns and behaviours from the vantage point of being an outsider. Mike Farren reviews Bhanu Kapil’s ‘How to Wash a Heart’ which explores rights and responsibilities between host and guest (in this case a refugee), the privileged and non-privileged, the default and other and the tensions that arise when the one cast in the role of guest behaves unconventionally or dares do something outside of the remit granted by the host.

Mike Farren is a new reviewer to The Blue Nib and one of several who responded to our recent recruitment drive. Over the next few months The Critical Nib has welcomed and looks forward to welcoming new reviews from Daniel Ajayi, Stephen A Allen, Jacqui Brown, Lyn Costello, Justin Goodman, Phillip Hall, Chloe Jacques, Jagari Mukherjee, Charline Poirier, Declan Toohey plus a couple of others who have queried but not yet started reviewing. This is in addition to our regular team of James Fountain, Carla Scarano d’Antonio, Melissa Todd and Ada Wofford. We also still welcome submissions of unsolicited reviews. Please check out The Critical Nib on The Blue Nib’s website which is updated with new reviews at least once a week.