Notable Articles

May 16, 2014

Thug: A Life of Caravaggio in Sixty-Nine Paragraphs 11

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He never had a chance. Three men held him down while a fourth sliced his face. Afterwards, he was almost unrecognizable. They could have killed him but they wanted him to live, bearing his scars for the rest of his life. Everyone would know what that meant.

May 8, 2014

The Starting Six: On the Remarkable Glory Days of Iowa Girls Basketball 17

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Girls basketball was part of the culture. Each spring the TV broadcasts from the capacity crowds at the state’s largest arena in Des Moines took over one of the three stations our antenna received, and it was largely from these games that I learned the names of small town Iowa: Grundy Center, Montezuma, What Cheer.

May 5, 2014

Shakespeare’s Greatest Play? 5 Experts Share Their Opinions 17

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William Shakespeare’s 450th birthday is upon us, and at The Millions we wanted to celebrate it in 21st century American style, by debating which of his 38 plays is the best.

March 26, 2014

Life is Too Short to Read a Bad Book: A Conversation with My Editor 12

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After I sold my novel to Little, Brown, my editor Allie Sommer and I talked on the phone (for the second time ever). I said, “My parents are so proud of me!” and she said something like, “Mine are so proud of me!”

March 18, 2014

There Are Two Kinds of Novelists… 21

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Owing to the vagaries of evolution and animal husbandry, there are lactose intolerant novelists (Dostoyevsky) and those blessed few for whom a latte does not ruin an afternoon (Marguerite Duras).

March 17, 2014

We Cast The Goldfinch Movie so Hollywood Doesn’t Have To 56

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We hereby submit our ideas for the Goldfinch cast. The process reveals the bizarre extent to which I think I understand the Hollywood casting processes, which starlets we think play trashy the best, and how it might be worth it to turn the cast on its head to let Michael B. Jordan play Theo.

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

28 Books You Should Read If You Want To 46

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I discovered one of my favorite books because the author called our store and charmed the living daylights out of me. I found another in a box of old books that my Russian literature professor left outside his office to give away.

February 7, 2014

Style Sheet: A Conversation with My Copyeditor 38

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I think I’ve always read like a copyeditor, even way back before I knew what a copyeditor was. One of my favorite authors is Proust, and when I was young I would read some of his sentences over and over trying to make sure I understood how every word related to the other words and just to make sure I understood what he was saying.

February 4, 2014

Oh, The Favorites You’ll Give: Literary Twitter’s Best Tweets 8

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To present literary Twitter in its best possible light, we are returning again to those most widely followed on literary Twitter, but this time, looking at which Tweets got the most favorites, we are highlighting literary Twitter’s best tweets.