Recent Articles

January 24, 2011

The So-Called Elite 2

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n+1 provides a fascinating study of today’s divisive concept of cultural elitism: “Today, though, it’s the bearers of culture rather than the wielders of power who are taxed with elitism. If the term is applied to powerful people, this is strictly for cultural reasons, as the different reputations of the identically powerful Obama and Bush […]

January 24, 2011

Contemporary Fiction and the Internet 0

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“The internet has altered our lives in ways television never did or could, but mainstream literary novelists – by which I mean writers who specialize in realistic, character-based narratives – have mostly shied away from writing about this, perhaps hoping that, like TV, it could be safely ignored.” Laura Miller examines how contemporary novels are […]

January 24, 2011

How Many Spaces After A Period? 3

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According to Slate: “Typing two spaces after a period is totally, completely, utterly, and inarguably wrong.”

January 24, 2011

The Dwindling Difference Between Play and Work: Jane McGonigal’s Reality is Broken 4

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McGonigal enumerates reality’s broken parts in a laundry list of suffering. In short, games will fix everything.

January 22, 2011

2010 National Book Critics Circle Award Finalists Announced 5

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The fiction list includes four books that have gotten quite a lot of attention over the last year

January 21, 2011

The Posthumous Jim Carroll: What Do We Owe a Dead Writer? 1

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Jim Carroll may have been gone, but in the comforting, ghostly way that artists do, he would endure.

January 20, 2011

McSweeney’s 2.0 0

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Version 2 of McSweeney’s quirky iPhone app includes an ebookstore with custom-designed ebooks. “Whereas most ebooks have weird line breaks, stretched type and clunky fonts, ours are actually designed so they look just as they do in print – clean and beautiful.”

January 20, 2011

Tourney Time! 4

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The Morning News has announced the list of judges and, more importantly, the books in contention for the 2011 Tournament of Books. Yours truly is among the judges again this year and very excited for the action to get underway.

January 20, 2011

The Amazon Alphabet: From Audio Books to Zane 6

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The ABCs of Amazon: a peek into the reading habits of America and, like it or not, a primer for what’s popular in the world of books.

January 20, 2011

Darts and Philosophy, Bowling and Metaphysics: A Primer on the Novels of Jean-Philippe Toussaint 3

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Toussaint deals with both the little irritations and the Big Questions, usually in as close a proximity as possible, and he respects no boundary between fiction and nonfiction.