Beautiful words for an ugly topic—War by Marge Simon and Alessandro Manzetti lay bare the bones of conflict and display them, every detail, for us to examine from the safe confines of our living rooms.

Raw, political and very real, these poems don’t hold back with their messages. The imagery is vivid, painting a mural of death across the reader’s mind. The poems don’t focus on any particular war, but offer a varied box of experiences. From jungle to desert and everywhere between, we are given a glimpse of the tragedy we wreak upon ourselves.

Without sounding like a 70s protest, the verses in War don’t come across as judgmental. They state facts and provide the experience so that we may judge. Besides the lovely writing, I have to give major credit to the illustrator as well.

Stefano Cardoselli has taken my breath away with his complex and engaging images. Darkly humorous, I found myself spending as much time looking at his art as I did reading and thinking about the poetry.

A wonderful book, I highly recommend it and wish Simon, Manzetti and Cardoselli all the best with this powerful book.

Links to explore…

Find War by Marge Simon and Alessandro Manzetti here.

Learn more about the creators of War here:
Author Marge Simon
Author Alessandro Manzetti
Illustrator Stefano Cardoselli

By Angela Yuriko Smith

Angela Yuriko Smith is a third-generation Ryukyuan-American, award-winning poet, author, and publisher with 20+ years in newspapers. Publisher of Space & Time magazine (est. 1966), two-time Bram Stoker Awards® Winner, and HWA Mentor of the Year, she shares Authortunities, a free weekly calendar of author opportunities at

4 thoughts on “Review: War by Simon and Manzetti”
  1. Thank you for your comments, Angela! I love that “a varied box of experiences” because these wars are not just bombs and gun wars. And because of the aftermath, the detritus of true horror war leaves behind. A most unfaithful mistress.

    1. Somehow you both made the horror of war have a beauty, not in a glorifying sense but in the tragic way. I felt like I had to rush to read to get my review by tonight, but now I will go back and savor more. This collection needs to be digested over time.

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