Curiosities

July 10, 2014

The History of the Blurb 0

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What if Petrarch had blurbed The Divine Comedy, or Shakespeare, “author of Tony Award-winning sensation Hamlet,” had reviewed Don Quixote? Tom Rachman imagines these blurbs and more for The Rumpus, and his piece pairs well with our brief history of the blurb.

July 10, 2014

“55 Thoughts” On The Air 0

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Recommended listening: Our own Nick Ripatrazone talks with NHPR about his Millions essay, “55 Thoughts for English Teachers.”

July 10, 2014

Making Mistakes 0

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“These were my two first mistakes about honesty: I thought it meant relentless self-flagellation, and I thought it could redeem everything.” Leslie Jamison and Anna Holmes discuss the mistakes they made as young writers.

July 10, 2014

“A Giant Empathy Machine” 1

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“It may be true… that the internet will turn out to be ‘a giant empathy machine.’ And yet, as any reader knows, we’ve already had one for centuries.” Drew Calvert reviews The Novel: A Biography for the Los Angeles Review of Books and provides an argument for the novel in the digital age.

July 9, 2014

New Ishiguro: The Buried Giant 0

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We didn’t catch it in time for our big preview, but Kazuo Ishiguro’s forthcoming novel The Buried Giant, now has an official U.S. release date of March 2015. The novel is the author’s first in 10 years, and his British publisher says it will be about “lost memories, love, revenge and war.”

July 9, 2014

:) :’) :-) 0

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Two weeks ago, the Internet Gods (meaning: the Unicode 7.0 update) gave us hundreds of new emoji symbols, including the middle finger and peace dove. By now our emoji usage patterns can be used by psychologists to understand our minds. “People who use no noses tend to be tweeting more about… Justin Bieber. They have younger interests, younger concerns, […]

July 9, 2014

“Everybody thinks they’re worth more than they’re being paid” 0

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“I can’t imagine how difficult it would be to jauntily denigrate 27.8 million—that’s the number of American workers who make less than $10.10 an hour,” yet, in The Morning News, a close reading of a few hundred letters to the editor about the minimum wage shows other Americans doing just that.

July 9, 2014

Eloise today 0

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“I am Eloise. I am forty-six.” It doesn’t get more charming than that.

July 9, 2014

“A man who kept to himself” 0

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Recommended reading: one essay on George Orwell‘s stomping grounds on the Scottish island where he wrote 1984 in the throes of a tubercular fever, and another on the tiny Indian town of Motihari where he was born.

July 9, 2014

Beware the Potterverse 0

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In case you missed it: JK Rowling just released a new Harry Potter short story on her own promotional website. Before you get too excited: the New Republic is less than sanguine, calling it “a marketing scam.” (Code for: not very good writing?) Which is not going to keep me from reading it anyway. Readers with more restraint might […]