Post & Courier: The Lines 

“[Varallo] has a seemingly supernatural ability to convey the inner thinking of children: their confusion, their moments of self-awareness, their particular observations and rationalizations, their wonderment and insecurity and deep sadness when the superstructures of their restrictive world prove to be a house of cards.”

Foreword Reviews: The Lines

“Subtle and melancholy, The Lines is a story about family dynamics, the ripple effects of separation, and the poignant and curious elements of an era.”

The Gazette: A Family In Crisis

“Courtesy of this terrible thing that’s happened, the children have wandered far afield from their presumably easy, straight-laced life and are getting to know all kinds of people in all new ways.”

The Millions: When We Were Young

“I wanted The Lines to be the kind of novel that hits as hard as a short story, since those are the kind of novels I like best.”

Kirkus Reviews: The Lines (starred review)

“A master of narrative control, Varallo creates the kind of page-turning suspense you don’t expect in a book like this . . . A darkly cutting investigation of dysfunction in which the kids, more often than not, are way sharper than the parents.”

Long River Review

“That’s a good sign to me, that a story is memorable years later. I want the story to stay with readers long after they’ve read it.”

Iowa Public Radio: Talk of Iowa

“There’s some sense of the way I see the world, of the way I apprehend my own life, that’s coming through in these stories.”

The Los Angeles Review: Everyone Was There

“These stories evince a sense of wonder at the world and a suspicion of lazy understandings of what is supposedly ordinary.”

The Colorado Review: Everyone Was There

“Absurdity is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, as Varallo reminds us, sometimes it is a wonderful thing, a means of keeping our thirst for meaning in check.”

Agni: Writing What You Want To Read

“Sometimes I will ask myself, What kind of story do I rarely see in the slush pile? What kind of story do I want to read right now?”

The Writer Magazine: How I Write

“The best ideas are hiding just behind your doubts. When I push through doubts, I find it’s an access point to something that’s meaningful.”