Recent Articles

November 27, 2016

Fanged 0

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If you’re wondering why you should read this new essay on Jack London, consider this sentence: “Born in 1876, the year of Little Bighorn and Custer’s Last Stand, the prolific writer would die in the year John T. Thompson invented the submachine gun.” In Smithsonian Magazine, Kenneth Brandt explores the brief life of the author.

November 26, 2016

“Forsterian-by-way-of-the-Beatles” 0

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Recommended Reading: Joanna Biggs on Zadie Smith and Swing Time, which we reviewed.

November 26, 2016

Fear Factor 0

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Colson Whitehead has some advice: write the book that “scares you shitless.” In a recent, wide-ranging interview with John Freeman, the Underground Railroad author talks about why he wrote his latest novel, along with his methods for sussing out good ideas. You could also read our review of The Underground Railroad. 

November 24, 2016

Before They Were Notable: 2016 0

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This year’s New York Times Notable Books of the Year list is out.

November 23, 2016

Like a Fried Egg Sliding off a Fat Man’s Naked Thigh: 18 Incredible Fair-Use Similes 0

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As a public service, I’m supplying the general public with the following fair-use similes. Sprinkle them throughout your own writing and be amazed by the lift in the overall quality of your work.

November 23, 2016

Clean Eating on the Wild Edge of Sorrow 10

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The real problem with aspiring to a spotless life is that, best-case scenario, upon arrival you realize that there’s nothing there. It’s like a wooden facade on the set of an old Western movie. It does exist; you can touch it, but you can also knock it over with a single push.

November 23, 2016

Olio 0

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We thoroughly enjoyed the latest episode of David Naimon‘s Between the Covers podcast featuring Whiting-Award winner Tyehimba Jess. The conversation centers on Jess’s latest book, Olio, a tour de force hybrid-genre exploration of African-American performers from the period just before the American Civil War through World War I. (Previously: We recommended Jess’s Leadbelly as perfect reading for train travel.)

November 23, 2016

More Moss 0

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The new issue of Moss Magazine, “a journal of the Pacific Northwest,” is up, including an interview with Amanda Coplin, author of The Orchardist. (The previous issue featured fiction by our own Sonya Chung.)

November 22, 2016

Big Bad Ted Sings Songs for Little Ones 6

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Ted Hughes was about the most frightening poet imaginable. His work invests every corner of existence with menace and unmanageable intensity. So it came as a bit of a shock to find out that he was also a marvelous poet for young people.

November 22, 2016

It Can Happen Here 0

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“It was astonishing. Utterly astonishing. Everyone of them seemed . . . entranced by him.” Sometimes older books get a second life given contemporary contexts; such is the case with Sinclair Lewis‘s 1935 It Can’t Happen Here, reports Time. The book, which was written as Hitler came to power, has sold out online. See also this New Yorker piece […]