Recent Articles

March 6, 2014

Bird Lives: On Stanley Crouch’s Kansas City Lightning 9

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I submit that the kind of place Parker holds within jazz tradition is a little like what you would get if you mixed Beethoven with Jimi Hendrix. He was a game changer.

March 5, 2014

Earth’s Song 0

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Recommended Reading: Joseph Fasano’s  “Coda,” which is The Missouri Review’s poem of the week. “Now he is listening for beginning./Now he is lying/among that sinew,/asking, as a boy would, where his song goes.”

March 5, 2014

Teenage Scum Tollbooth 0

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We couldn’t get enough of Mallory Ortberg’s “Dirtbag Hamlet,” and now she presents “Dirtbag Phantom Tollbooth.” “KING AZAZ: Please, my dear boy! Without these sisters, our kingdom will decay into chaos MILO: sisters eh nice.”

March 5, 2014

Descendant of Fear: On Scott Stossel’s My Age of Anxiety 2

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Life for Scott Stossel has been a gauntlet of morbid what-ifs: what if I pass out, lose control of my bowels, bolt from the podium in the midst of a speech? To keep such mayhem at bay, he’s medicated himself with bourbon, scotch, gin, and vodka. By prescription, he has taken Klonopin, Xanax, Ativan, Imipramine, Wellbutrin, Nardil, Thorazine, Zoloft, Effexor, Paxil, and Propranolol.

March 5, 2014

Is She a Betty or a Veronica? 0

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Lena Dunham is the new voice of the Archie comics generation. The Girls creator will write four issues of the famous comic, coming out in 2015. She’s not the only woman joining the comics industry. DC Comics is adding a Native American teenage girl, inspired by the real Canadian Aboriginal teen activist Shannen Koostachin, to the […]

March 5, 2014

Moving in for the Kill 0

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Killing off your characters is never an easy feat. At The New York Times, thriller writer Alex Berenson discusses his reservations on killing the hero of his spy series.  “John Wells has markedly enriched my life — an impressive feat for a man who doesn’t exist.” The eighth installment, The Counterfeit Agent, just came out.

March 5, 2014

Beautiful Sentence Diagrams 0

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The idea of having to diagram a sentence still gives us nightmares, but Pop Chart Lab has diagrammed opening lines of famous novels, including those as simple as Slaughterhouse-Five and as complex as Don Quixote.

March 5, 2014

Hot Beats and High Genre: Submergence by J.M. Ledgard 0

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High genre is fiction that allows you to investigate an individual text, because it is full of its own traits and merits, whether in its characterizations, its plot, or its prose. Regular genre, I suppose, is something you can only talk about as a family — tracing the themes shared collectively among its members. High genre will always be vulnerable to the taint of its lower peers, because it shares the equipment, the same beats. This is why people are drawn to True Detective, and yet can accept assertions that it is just another dead naked lady show.

March 4, 2014

Untethered 0

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“Her characters sleepwalk to their certain fates through artificial pocket universes, each one seemingly constructed to satisfy the curiosity of an inhumane, omniscient narrator. Few writers have been so consistently and brilliantly unkind.” On Muriel Spark’s The Bachelors.

March 4, 2014

Branching Out 1

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Is it possible to read fiction by an actor without thinking of them as the character that made them famous? It’s a question many people asked when reading James Franco, and it’s a question they’re likely to ask again when reading One More Thing, a new book of short stories by The Office star B. […]