Recent Articles

August 5, 2014

The Art of Translation 0

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In general, fact-checking isn’t the most glamorous part of a journalist’s career, which is why Michael Erard was surprised to find that a recent fact-checking session for an Al Jazeera article turned out to be among the most interesting conversations of his life. Why? His sources were linguists, and their job was to explain to him the […]

August 5, 2014

Magical Thinking 0

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After five years, Lev Grossman has released the final book in his Magicians trilogy, aptly reviewed in the Sunday Times by our own Edan Lepucki. At Slate, the Awl cofounder, Year in Reading alum and novelist Choire Sicha looks back on the series as a whole. After reading through all three entries, Choire poses a simple but hard-to-answer question: is main character […]

August 5, 2014

The Art of Close Writing 10

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Close writing really is an amazing thing. Consider that this essay right now has been narrated in the third person, and yet there is no question as to what Clark’s opinions are.

August 5, 2014

Tuesday New Release Day: Grossman; House; Gaffney; Montefiore; Tanweer; Leslie-Hynan; Brooks; Gordon; Livings; Schottenfeld; Kennedy; Bertino; Gay 0

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Out this week: The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman; The Kills by Richard House; When the World Was Young by Elizabeth Gaffney; Secrets of the Lighthouse by Santa Montefiore; The Scatter Here is Too Great by Bilal Tanweer; Ride Around Shining by Chris Leslie-Hynan; Painted Horses by Malcolm Brooks; The Liar’s Wife by Mary Gordon; The Dog by Jack Livings; […]

August 4, 2014

“Depression has a peculiar texture” 0

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Recommended Reading: Larissa Pham on Michael Cunningham’s The Hours. You could also read Holloway McCandless on the author’s By Nightfall.

August 4, 2014

Dr. Seuss and The Very Bad Influence 1

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Add this to the list of incredible things you didn’t know you needed until now. At Quartz, Jenni Avins reads through a selection of hand-typed book reviews, found in the NYPL’s archives, in which librarians tear apart children’s books they find objectionable. Sample quote, from a review of Green Eggs and Ham: “There must be […]

August 4, 2014

“Smudged pink harlequin glasses” 0

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Last week, I pointed readers to a Page-Turner essay by Amy Bloom, whose new novel, Lucky Us, came out on Tuesday. Now, as part of the By the Book series in the Times, she talks about her summertime reads, her first picture book and who she’d invite to a literary dinner party. (FYI, we’ve written […]

August 4, 2014

Not Exactly Rotten 0

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According to a recent survey, Danes are the happiest people in the world. This came as a surprise, writes Mathilde Walter Clark, to most of her fellow Scandinavians, who know very well the unhappier elements of their daily lives. The problem, she suggests, is that words like “happiness,” “ambition” and “contentment” have subtly different meanings […]

August 4, 2014

Calling All Students! 0

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Calling all undergrads and grad students! McSweeney’s is holding their first-ever Student Short Story Contest. The grand prize — $500 and publication in their 51st issue — will go to the student who sends in the best story before the last day of August. Get cracking, but don’t go beyond their 7,500-word limit.

August 4, 2014

Extinction Stories: The Ecological True-Crime Genre 1

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We are living in the midst of the worst die-off since the dinosaurs fell victim to an asteroid 65 million years ago. Whatever the proximal causes, human beings are the asteroids this time.