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Pigeons and Peace Doves by Matthew J. Hall

– Reviewed by Grant Tarbard – Matthew J. Hall is the author of a few self­-published poetry collections, including From the Depths and Through the Madness and In the Bleak Hours. Now comes his Blood Pudding Press 2015 prize-winning chapbook, Pigeons and Peace Doves. The cover depicts an assemblage art pigeon with women’s stockinged legs for a tail, Monty-Python-­esque, and…

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Margaret Thatcher’s Museum by Antony Owen

– Reviewed by Emma Lee – Margaret Thatcher’s Museum recounts growing up in the English Midlands during Margaret Thatcher’s time as Prime Minister (1979 – 1990), when Coventry’s main employers – chiefly the car industry – were shutting down, unemployment was on the rise and the spectre of the Cold War loomed. In “The Other Iron…

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What They Say in Avenale by Caroline Maldonado

– Reviewed by Allen Prowle – What They Say in Avenale creates a remarkably holistic vision of a place in just twenty-four poems. The people of Avenale, in the Italian region of Le Marche are not seen in a landscape but as part of its woof and warp, threads of its fabric, no more and no less…

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The Will to Gig by Anna Ghislena

– Reviewed by Emma Lee – Anna Ghislena is inspired by live rock music and its culture; she also writes concert reviews and interviews for online music publications. The Will to Gig features 8 poems describing the anxiety-inducing lateness of public transport and desperation to get to a gig; looking at daft things requested on band riders;…

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Those People by Paul Stephenson

– Reviewed by Anthony Costello – Those People recently won the Poetry Business Competition, one of the premier pamphlet competitions in the UK. Winning this is a massive boost to a poet’s confidence and career. Run by Peter and Ann Sansom, Poetry Business has become a credible arbiter of taste in England, aided by the commissioning of high profile judges:…

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Placing Stones by Martin Crawley

– Reviewed by Adrian Slatcher – All grief is personal, all remembrance is public. At least that was part my conclusion reflecting on Placing Stones, a short memento mori by Martin Crawley. There are seven poems and a dozen or so line drawings – of different stones placed in memory – in this short elegant book from…