Recent Articles

June 3, 2005

Oprah’s at it again 0

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I’m guessing that Oprah’s latest choice for her book club was timed to coincide with BEA (the big book expo) going on in New York right now. Despite recent pleas for a return to contemporary fiction, Oprah has decided to stick with the classics. The latest pick is notable in that it’s not just one […]

June 1, 2005

Heard any good books lately? 0

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A few days ago Scott put up a post about audiobooks in which he put forward the idea that listening to a book isn’t quite the same as reading it. There were quite a few people who disagreed with him, though not persuasively enough to change his mind. I happen to be a fan of […]

May 29, 2005

New book previews: Michael Cunningham, Dai Sijie, Terry Gamble, Kaui Hart Hemmings 0

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Michael Cunningham’s Pulitzer-winning novel The Hours was one of the biggest hits of the last ten years, so it’s fair to say that his follow-up Specimen Days is being anticipated by many readers. Like The Hours, Specimen Days is composed of three interrelated stories. The title of the novel is borrowed from Walt Whitman’s autobiography, […]

May 27, 2005

Bookfinding 0

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Today I happened to walk by one of those thrift stores connected to a hospital, and, thinking they might have a couple of shelves of books, I decided to stop in. I’m glad I did. The books were way in the back in this weird garage-like annex, and the room smelled pretty bad. This made […]

May 27, 2005

New and upcoming books 0

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John Burdett’s sequel to Bangkok 8, his mystery set in Thailand, has come out. It’s called Bangkok Tattoo. Here’s my review of Bangkok 8 (scroll down). Here’s EW’s review of Bangkok Tattoo. And here’s an excerpt. I noticed that Penguin has put out a smart-looking new edition of John Keegan’s essential history book, The Second […]

May 26, 2005

Some things 0

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Kate Atkinson’s editor at Little Brown, Reagan Arthur, has posted at the LBC blog and there’s some good Q & A going on in the comments. I just surreptitiously spy on people reading, but Ed – prompted by an idea from Sara – marches right up to them and quizzes them on their literary knowledge. […]

May 26, 2005

What people are reading 0

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I spent a lot of time on the el yesterday riding all over Chicago, and there were lots of folks reading books. When you actually look at what people read, you realize that the reading habits of average folks range far beyond the coverage of newspaper book sections. In terms of what actually gets read, […]

May 24, 2005

The Island of Lost Maps by Miles Harvey 0

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First the good: there’s lots of neat info in this book about antique map collecting and about the history of maps in general. Anyone with a passing interest in maps will find that the The Island of Lost Maps contains a number of absorbing digressions about adventurous mapmakers from centuries ago. Miles Harvey’s book also, […]

May 23, 2005

Music Meme 0

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1. The person who passed the baton to you.Scott. 2. Total volume of music files on your computer.At the moment I’ve got a bit more than a gig, much of it the songs that have managed to follow me through the three computers I’ve been through since the Napster heyday. 3. The title and artist […]

May 19, 2005

A Lawrence Weschler Reading List 2

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Back in March after hearing about Robert Boynton’s book of interviews with journalists called The New New Journalism, I put together a post that listed some of the books by this select group of writers. At the time, my friend Garth was taking a class at NYU taught by Lawrence Weschler (himself a “New New […]