Lists

August 27, 2014

Three Books to Get Over an Affair 4

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For an acute case, read all three.

August 15, 2014

The Thriller, Reinvented 3

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During the Cold War, the conflicts that powered the thriller were rooted in ideology: Le Carre’s Berlin and Greene’s Havana were mainly backdrops against which the clash of the superpowers was played out. The new thrillers were not focused on ideology but on place; it was the peeling away of layers of culture and history that gave these novels their impetus.

July 28, 2014

The Book That Wasn’t: 5 Fiction Writers Talk About their Novels in Drawers 4

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What are we to do to with our books that weren’t? How can we learn from them, and when should we let them go?

July 7, 2014

Most Anticipated: The Great Second-Half 2014 Book Preview 15

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At over 8,000 words strong and encompassing 84 titles, this is the only second-half 2014 book preview you will ever need.

June 25, 2014

Alternate Routes: A Summer Reading Itinerary 1

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I never can quite fathom summer’s end at its start, and so my reading lists stretch on endlessly, too, crammed with long novels too unwieldy for the demands of other seasons.

May 27, 2014

55 Thoughts for English Teachers 24

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You need to love words. You don’t need to love a certain type of book or a particular writer, but you need to love letters and phrases and the possibilities of language. You will spend most of your days dealing with words, and students can sense if words do not bring you joy.

March 25, 2014

No Right Path: Arriving at Writing from Outside the Humanities 6

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Fear and wonder pulled me toward both astronomy and writing. If the world does not create awe in us, we will neuter the beautiful and complex. The profound becomes prosaic.

March 11, 2014

“My First Buy”: Book Editors Discuss Their Earliest Acquisitions 2

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I wondered about the first professional decisions of newly minted editors — be they powerful tastemakers blissfully ignorant of P-and-L statements or recently promoted assistants. What drew them to the first proposal they tried to acquire? Did they look upon the decision as a momentous one? Do they even remember it now?

March 10, 2014

Five Crime Novels Where Women are the True Detectives 19

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Whether or not True Detective returns for another season and solves its woman problems, here’s a list of crime novels where there’s a woman in charge. You might discover, like me, that you’re an accidental fan of the female detective.

February 18, 2014

The Author Sends Her Regrets: J.K. Rowling and Other Writers with Second Thoughts 4

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Is a writer allowed to have regrets? Certainly. Is she allowed to air them publicly? I mean, yeah, it’s a free internet, why not? Do I want to hear a single additional word about the world of Harry Potter from J. K. Rowling that is not in the form of another book? No, not particularly.