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[The Millions] In Praise of Urinal Lit
The most confessional thing I’ve ever read wasn’t in someone’s diary, or journal, or their posthumously collected letters. Such writing always has an audience in mind, that audience being the future biographers that will excavate one’s inane reflections and elevate them to their proper place

[Book Forum] VIDEO: Victor LaValle & Guests: A People's Future of the United States | NYPL

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: On track
Not the message

[Book Forum] PAPER TRAIL: Morgan Library gets $12.5 million renovation; Janet Malcolm on her personal library
The Swedish ambassador to China is under investigation after “she was accused of arranging unauthorized, secret talks” between imprisoned publisher Gui Minhai’s daughter and “two Chinese men who had offered to help free him, but instead pressured her to keep silent,” the New York Times

[The Millions] The Extraordinary Enigmatic: Kathryn Davis’s ‘The Silk Road’
Wormholes, portals, wizards, dachshunds, geological time, haute cuisine: these are a few of the things you will find in Kathryn Davis’s fiction. “My sensibility as an artist,” Davis said in a recent interview in The Review of Contemporary Fiction, “is (thank God) a Frankenstein monster of

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: Ruining the Internet and breaking the world
Without social organizations, social technologies will eat us alive

[The Millions] Candlepin Bowling with Elizabeth McCracken
“When I think about it, I was really raised by independent bookstores,” Elizabeth McCracken tells Ann Patchett in a new interview for Patchett’s bookstore, Parnassus Books. The two authors discuss bowling, multi-generational novels, and all-nighters. You can read an excerpt from

[The Millions] Cry Out with a Woman’s Voice: Love, Resistance, and the Erotic Verse of Syria’s National Poet
When my grandmother’s sister was killed, my grandmother inherited her sister’s identity. Born in Saidnaya, Syria, in 1926, my grandmother entered the world three years after the French Mandate—the period of French rule after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire with World War I—went into effect.

[Book Forum] VIDEO: Ellie Kemper talks about her new book My Squirrel Days, and more

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: Until now
Things larger than the modish demands of the present

[Book Forum] PAPER TRAIL: Verso launching fiction imprint; Naomi Alderman’s “The Power” adapted for Amazon series
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the New York Times offers a list of “books for broken hearts,” including Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera, and Jenny Offill’s Dept. of Speculation. Verso is launching a fiction imprint. Verso Fiction will

[The Millions] Stranger in a Strange Land: Dave Eggers’s ‘The Parade’
Someone once said, “Life”—or was it history?—“is one damned thing after another.” Whichever it was, and whoever said it, Dave Eggers’s The Parade—or any parade, really—is just that: one thing after another. The novella’s plot moves in a straight line, event after event rolling

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: In academia
The liberal arts may not survive the 21st century

[Book Forum] MISCELLANEOUS: More, More, More
With his eye on the longer game, Ronald Reagan hedged against the nativists then filling Republican ranks. Even as his administration was carrying out workplace raids that critics were comparing to Operation Wetback in the 1950s, he bet the party’s fortunes on courting the Latino vote.

[The Millions] The Power of Myth: Marlon James Wants to Take You on an Epic Journey
When asked, Marlon James is hard-pressed to name his favorite story. It’s admittedly a nearly impossible request to make of anyone, and surely more so of a novelist, whose trade relies so deeply on both intake and telling, however tangled, of tales. Unable to name just one, James improvised. “My

[Book Forum] VIDEO: Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah at the 2018 5 Under 35 Celebration

[Salon Books] Has Trump wrecked our sex life? "Post-Trump Sex Disorder" is real, says sex therapist
"Big Mean Sexy Daddy"? Salon turns to Dr. Susan Block for answers to questions you didn't want to ask

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: Square the circle
Things to listen for

[The Millions] An Earthquake-Proof Library
Japanese architect Shinsuke Fujii has designed a floor-to-ceiling bookshelf that’s meant to withstand the shocks of an earthquake. The bookcase is integral to the structural stability of the building, and its shelves even act as a ladder to reach high shelves. Perhaps Jorge Luis Borges was

[Book Forum] PAPER TRAIL: BuzzFeed staff form union; Valeria Luiselli on bilingual writing
Katie Couric is working on a memoir. In Unexpected, USA Today reports that “Couric plans to share details both ‘hilarious’ and ‘humiliating’ as she looks back on her prize-winning, 40-year career.” The book will be published by Little, Brown in 2021. At Longreads, Lily Meyer talks to

[The Millions] Parallel Lives Lost: K Chess’s ‘Famous Men Who Never Lived’
In Ezra Sleight’s classic sci-fi novel The Pyronauts, the world ends in fire. Aliens in crystal spaceships arrive on Earth bearing peaceful solutions to humanity’s deepest crises: war, illness, racism, xenophobia. But the well-intentioned extraterrestrials bring along an unintended stowaway: a

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: Philosophy and the environment
A philosophical analysis of Anthropocene

[The Millions] Glory Edim’s Empire of Knowledge
The founder of Well-Read Black Girl, Glory Edim, spoke to HuffPost’s “We Built This” series on her passion for literacy and the urgency of protecting black women: “There’s a vastness to blackness that needs to be recognized, especially in media, especially in literature,

[The Millions] Tuesday New Release Day: Starring Luiselli, Morrison, Williams, Newman, and More
Here’s a quick look at some notable books—new titles from the likes of Valeria Luiselli, Toni Morrison, John Williams, Sandra Newman and more—that are publishing this week. Want to learn more about upcoming titles? Then go read our most recent book preview. Want to

[Book Forum] VIDEO: Franklin Foer: World Without Mind

[Book Forum] DAILY REVIEW: Mothers by Chris Power
The fiction writer who is also a critic is cursed with the predicament of having strewn about the very tools for his own dismemberment. Hold up the analytic knives to a purely creative output, and the fruits of artistic labor too readily slacken and yield. Susan Sontag has often been castigated for

[Book Forum] OMNIVORE: Mysterious journey
Woefully under-sketched

[Guardian Books Blog] Tell us: what books are the most shocking or disturbing?
On this week’s books podcast, we discuss the works that we struggled to finish – or even had to hide – because they were so shocking. Share your literary terrors in the comments below“I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound or stab us,” Franz Kafka once wrote. “If the

[Book Forum] PAPER TRAIL: How Haruki Murakami became a writer; Brexit gothic fiction
Haruki Murakami talks to the New Yorker’s Deborah Treisman about cats, alternate worlds, and how he became a writer. Murakami says that inspiration struck at a Yakult Swallows baseball game in Tokyo. “The first batter hit a double, and at that moment I got a feeling I could write. Maybe I’d

[Guardian Books Blog] Reading group: Giovanni's Room by James Baldwin is our book for February
This month’s choice is a groundbreaking gay love story that impressed even prejudiced criticsGiovanni’s Room by James Baldwin has come out of the hat and will be our book about love for this month’s reading group.Baldwin’s second novel was written in 1956 when the author lived in Paris. As

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