The Books

The Reater, from Winter 1997 onwards…

Poems and prose and always more

Shane Rhodes (Editor of Wrecking Ball Press) began The Reater with Owen Benwell when they became frustrated with the poorly produced magazines they were seeing, they believed that badly photocopied sheets of confusing and unreadable verses were hardly going to set people’s appetite for poetry alight.

The Reater seems to carry on a colloquial poetic conversation between the east coast of Britain and the west coast of America with readers and writers listening in from many points in the middle. Much of the work it publishes has the rare quality of language overheard, avoiding the preached at spoken to told off stuff that sometimes characterizes grander or more traditional work. – Simon Armitage

The streetwise slab-sized Reater is streets ahead of any other magazine in giving the reader a working report on the buzzy special relationship between British and American poetry. The new writers it generously showcases in each chunky issue are often as startlingly original as the more familiar names. All are in touch with our times as well as with our selves. – Neil Astley

“So we decided to stop complaining and do something about it ourselves. It was important that The Reater should look and feel good. People normally throw magazines away, but we wanted it to be something you’d keep.”

And so the first edition of The Reater was published in the winter of 1997, it brought together challenging new British writing with the best of Southern California, it was produced in a high quality paperback format, and featured established names alongside excellent newcomers. Interleaved among the poetry and prose are interviews, reviews, and striking photographs by James Brown, and Simon Rees.