Now Read This: March 2022

Highlighting recently released works by marginalized creators

Beast at Every Threshold by Natalie Wee
Description from Arsenal Pulp Press: An unflinching shapeshifter, Beast at Every Threshold dances between familial hauntings and cultural histories, intimate hungers and broader griefs. Memories become malleable, pop culture provides a backdrop to glittery queer love, and folklore speaks back as a radical tool of survival. With unapologetic precision, Natalie Wee unravels constructs of “otherness” and names language our most familiar weapon, illuminating the intersections of queerness, diaspora, and loss with obsessive, inexhaustible ferocity – and in resurrecting the self rendered a site of violence, makes visible the “Beast at Every Threshold. “

Beguiling and deeply imagined, Wee’s poems explore thresholds of marginality, queerness, immigration, nationhood, and reinvention of the self through myth.

Coining a Wishing Tower by Ayesha Raees

Description from Platypus Press: Coining a Wishing Tower—selected by Kaveh Akbar as winner of the 2020 Broken River Prize—is both story and song, a lyrical narrative that gathers and releases. There are moments of childlike wonder and of adult meditation—oftentimes one and the same. In fragments both real and unreal, this is a book of rituals, of history, of surrender.

Ashes to Justice by R.E.I.L.

Description from Day Eight Books: Ashes to Justice is the debut collection by poet educator R.E.I.L. A poetic lightning bolt tracing the path of love, abuse, and recovery toward self-love, Prince William County poet laureate Kim B Miller described the book as, “Written with a whisper and a hammer.”

Out of Mind & Into Body by [ɥɐɹɐs] Cavar (Ethel Zine and Micro Press)

Review from Fox Auslander, lead poetry editor of Alien Literary Magazine: Out of Mind & Into Body tears through the medicalized trappings of social embodiment with analytical precision. From examining the ways in which doctors pry through autistic minds to unraveling the feminine coding of a fainting couch, Cavar leaves no diagnostic harm left unquestioned. Readers, be warned: this is a book for the faint of heart and audaciously limp of wrist. With their third stunning chapbook release in under a year, Cavar asserts themselves as an incomparable force across genres and forms. “what does it mean when i stand naked revealing you, nothing.”

Do you have a lit journal issue, chapbook, book, or other work that’s about to be published? Email us at to be added to our Books Available to Review list and featured on an upcoming Now Read This list.

Vagabond City Literary Journal

Founded in 2013, we are a literary journal dedicated to publishing outsider literature. We publish art, prose, reviews, and interviews from marginalized creators.