Curiosities

December 23, 2015

The Pathways of an Essay 0

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Recommended Reading: E.V. de Cleyre writes for Ploughshares about the essay form and its familiar shapes.

December 23, 2015

Party Animals 0

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“The point of a party is to make us forget we are solitary, wretched and betrothed to death; in other words, to transform us into animals.” Michel Houellebecq offers some handy tips, over at The Believer. Pair with this Millions review of Houellebecq’s The Map and the Territory.

December 23, 2015

Small Fish 0

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Over at The Guardian, Kevin Duffy argues that small presses do the heavy lifting in the publishing world. Pair with Edan Lepucki’s Millions interview with her agent about publishing a first book.

December 22, 2015

Sentimental Education 0

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Recommended Reading: On sentimentality in literary fiction and commercial novels.

December 22, 2015

The Book of Exodus 0

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“What we call them is entirely irrelevant: emigrants, migrants, refugees, exiles—we all know to whom we refer. Refugeedom is our common cultural meme. It is the story with which Christian civilization begins. We bear the imprint of the furious index finger God used to banish Adam and Eve from Eden.” Dubravka Ugrešić writes about displacement […]

December 22, 2015

Novelistic Ambitions 0

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David Kurnick explores what makes Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels so addictive. As he puts it, “In Ferrante we see what grand novelistic ambition looks like devoid of writerly vanity.” Pair with Cora Currier’s essay on reading Italy through Ferrante’s books.

December 22, 2015

Tuesday New Release Day: Elton; French; Michell; Merwin 0

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Out this week: Time and Time Again by Ben Elton; According to Yes by Dawn French; The Penguin Lessons by Tom Michell; and What Is a Garden? by W.S. Merwin.  Support The Millions: Bookmark this link and start there when you shop at Amazon.

December 21, 2015

Best of Poetry 0

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Does poetry tickle your fancy? Let us go then, you and I, when the evening is spread out against the sky and check out these few different lists of the best poetry books of 2015, from sources like The Guardian and Tin House. Our own Year in Reading series is also chock full of poetry recommendations.

December 21, 2015

Baby It’s Warm Outside 0

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“It turned out that the most successful Christmas records tended to have two common qualities: catchy, upbeat melodies and imagined unlikely scenarios for anthropomorphized yuletide characters.” Move over, Frosty! It’s beginning to look a lot like … an unseasonably warm December. Here is a brief history of Christmas songs and of their often-surprising rise from […]

December 21, 2015

Extremely Patient and Incredibly Careful 2

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It looks like Jonathan Safran Foer will be publishing his first novel in eleven years next fall. The book, tentatively titled Here I Am, is the story of an American Jewish family, set against a background of traumatic events in the Middle East including earthquakes and an invasion of Israel. Foer’s last novel, Extremely Loud […]