Baltimore Magazine Reviews: Books

Baltimore Magazine, November 2014
By John LewisCSA belt buckle
Ripple Meets the Deep

Jason Tinney (CityLit Press)

Harry Crews blurbed fellow Southern writer Larry Brown’s debut book by succinctly stating, “Talent has struck.” This book of short stories by Jason Tinney, a Frederick resident and occasional contributor to Baltimore, brings Crews’s quote to mind. Tinney, like the aforementioned writers, crafts bold and sensual stories that ripple with nuance below the surface. His self-conscious characters might bleed and bruise, but it’s the seemingly offhanded comment that hangs in the air or the sense of unspoken longing that nudges them toward profundity. They grapple with aging and mortality and a sense that the open road, once so inviting, might lead nowhere good. They also sense that the salvation they’re seeking might be found closer to home, in things like the hushed beauty of a snowfall or the warmth of a pre-dawn embrace. But the restlessness stirs, bringing tension and an aching humanity to Tinney’s prose.