Best non-fiction piece? Best fiction?

KeskusteluMagazines!!!!! New Yorker, Science, Atlantic, Mad......

Liity LibraryThingin jäseneksi, niin voit kirjoittaa viestin.

Best non-fiction piece? Best fiction?

Tämä viestiketju on "uinuva" —viimeisin viesti on vanhempi kuin 90 päivää. Ryhmä "virkoaa", kun lähetät vastauksen.

helmikuu 11, 2010, 5:06 pm

I have sampled a lot of 'new' writers in the New Yorker -- Allegra Goodman comes to mind as a fiction writer I like a lot. Andrea Lee. Also, sometimes, writers I don't like. Sometimes I get impatient with the fiction, but they have a massive audience to please, not just me.

At the mention of non-fiction all the thoughts just skittered out of my brain like mice running away from the cat.

helmikuu 24, 2011, 9:32 am

On the Oct ... 18ish issue there was a terrific story by Richard Powers.. all about a passionate book lover. Very apropos.

In the following issue one of those review/essays on procrastinating. Possibly required reading in order to join this group. Unfortunately the book they were reviewing costs 65.00 !!! That is a very good reason to procrastinate about buying it!

Muokkaaja: helmikuu 24, 2011, 11:09 am

Thanks for the recommendation for the Richard Powers story, Lucy. I'm pretty sure I still have that issue. I went to look at it on the NYr website and it's in the one with the cover of the person sitting in a chair with a laptop (probably on LT?) in front of wall-to-wall books. I loved that cover.

Also, I'd recommend the article by Rebecca Mead called Middlemarch and Me: What George Eliot teaches us in the Feb 14th/21st 2011 Anniversary Issue. Here are a couple of quotes that I liked:
In her journals, which were not published in their entirety until twelve years ago, Eliot writes with anguish about her limited accomplishment, and a sense of too often falling short of her capacities.

Once, when she was asked which real-life person had been the inspiration for Causabon--a man whose "soul was sensitive without being enthusiastic; it was too languid to thrill out of self-consiousness into passionate delight; it went on fluttering in the swampy ground where it was hatched, thinking of its wings and never flying"--she tapped her own breast.

helmikuu 24, 2011, 5:12 pm

Oh you temptress, Pat, I am entirely OCD in this regard and CANNOT read them out of order without feeling a great sense of terrible wrongness......

helmikuu 26, 2011, 8:31 am

Nov 1 issue -- article on Cyber-war -- including what a stupid name that is, but it garners attention and attracts investors-- at bottom. At what point does cyber-snooping completely infringe on privacy rights? Also there is a debate over which method is more effective -- encrypting sensitive stuff or planting 'ware that can let govt. sniffers get into everybody's internet travels. I know what I think! Gov't doesn't like encryption, duh. Furthermore, there is the issue of what exactly a 'cyber-war' would achieve. It would be counter-productive, probably, for whoever launched it would also be vulnerable...... ah well.

Great short story by Frances Hwang. "Blue Roses" , no poems jumped out at me, cartoons were a bit strange some of them. The review of Keith Richards' memoir was fun. That's it.

helmikuu 26, 2011, 3:05 pm

Nov 8 2010 - most interesting piece (to me) was about Alberto Salazar a trainer of marathon runners - whether you can change someone's running style -- improve it. Nice piece about Ntozake Shange, somehow I couldn't read either about Elvis Costello or a Chinese writer Wang. No stand out cartoons or poems. The Jim Shepard short story was well done -- the attempt to get into the mind of a person who is seriously f-ed up.... who can say why? Finally the second best piece was a review of Siddhartha Mukherjee's book The Emperor of Maladies: A Biography of Cancer -- a well-written and compassionate effort is the verdict.

helmikuu 26, 2011, 8:29 pm

Nov 15,2010 issue had way too many interesting things in it -- a chilling piece on the TB epidemic in India -- the technology exists to do a great deal but a good deal of work has to be done to 'interface' the technology in a realistic way with medical practices. Then a piece on Rory Stewart whose somewhat odd book about spending a month walking across a part of Afghanistan I read last year. Apparently he has run for a conservative seat in Parliament and won it..... clearly he is charismatic in some off beat way. He seems very much in the tradition of the restless explorer/adventurer/writer...... Being an MP seem odd, but he's young yet. A Tessa Hadley story that was all right, a good review of the latest Cleopatra books. One or two good cartoons, one excellent, excellent poem by Dan Chiasson I have to rip out and keep, called 'Father and Son'.

helmikuu 26, 2011, 8:48 pm

July 26, 2010 Issue

I liked that the cover "Summer Getaway" was by Adrian Tomine, a graphic novel writer that I've just discovered.

I had already read the article by John Cassidy "The Volcker Rule" about Paul Volcker's attempt to get Obama's version of the financial reform legislation passed. As with most legislation, compromise was necessary to get it passed and the Volcker Rule (keeping commercial banks from speculating in the financial markets) was weakened.

The Jonathan Franzen article about the illegal killing of songbirds in the Mediterranean was interesting. Apparently, people in Cyprus, Malta and Italy love to eat songbirds. The trappers lure the birds by playing birdsong at high volume and then the birds get stuck on lime-sticks. Franzen says 5 billion birds migrate through the Mediterranean every Spring and 1 billion are killed deliberately.

My favorite piece in this issue was the fiction short story by Karen Russell "The Dredgeman's Revelation." Russell just published Swamplandia which has gotten great reviews. I really liked Russell's writing so I'm excited to read her new book.

helmikuu 26, 2011, 9:02 pm

Good for you having the strength to wade through the Volker piece..... I sort of flitted through it. The songbird article was really painful. I don't eat tuna fish, so they can stop eating da boids. I have to check out this Karen Russell.... I must have read that story, but I can't remember it right now......

helmikuu 26, 2011, 9:09 pm

I really like this thread, Lucy. When I get up to the issues you've already posted about it'll be very helpful to see which articles you recommended.

helmikuu 26, 2011, 9:18 pm

I hope you read some of the ones I didn't read!

Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 6, 2011, 4:57 pm

Finished the November Food issue -- had to read just about every word...... articles about how awful the food was in the White House during FDR's time, about root vegetables (confirming for me too, that there is something about Jane Kramer that really annoys me -- she is gleeful, for example, about catching out her gardener growing potatoes behind her regular garden that he would sell himself -- ''so I took them" -- I would never do that. I can't even imagine doing that. I hope he quit. Also, and now I'm just peeving unfairly, I hate the way she writes offhandedly about making a bourdelais des enfants perdu en croute or whatever crap -- I can't stand food snobbery, in fact, can't stand it. Food enthusiasm, no problem, I love Calvin Trillin, but this woman, gah.). THEN a great piece on weird foodies -- raw milk drinkers, high meat eaters (iew iew iew) and primal eaters and opportunivores -- it's a little 'turn-your-stomach' but fascinating. The story, by Doctorow was a good one for a change. Also a great Roz Chast Dad driving his teen crazy. My daughter read it and thought the Dad was simply a moron, and seemed unconvinced when I said that I thought the Dad was having his daughter on, which makes it even funnier, as it proves they really do think we are such morons we are incapable of irony, even.

maaliskuu 6, 2011, 5:18 pm

Grr, now I'm wishing I'd kept the NYers I purged. Well, actually, they're still there in the recycling stack, weather's been too awful to put the recycling out, but really do I want to retrieve them? Or there's online, but that's fraught with peril.

maaliskuu 6, 2011, 7:10 pm

No, no! Just pick up where you are and move on, never look back! My goal is to be about a month behind all the time, so the current stuff (which I can learn about other places) is no longer the least bit tempting.

maaliskuu 7, 2011, 9:04 pm

Knocked off the last November issue -- didn't take too long, a slightly odd article about an economist being hailed as 'the Maitreya' (or something) - essentially one of these ideas that someone is going to come along and solve all our problems..... an endless piece on how self-serving banking and bankers are (well, duh) but we need them..... and a GREAT piece on Keith Moon the drummer from The Who. And a so-so short story featuring a dog. I have a serious pet (ha ha) peeve against using dogs or any pets as metaphors or anything symbolic in stories. No problem having them, just don't make them 'stand' for anything.

maaliskuu 19, 2011, 5:56 pm

Finally into December -- amazing piece in the Dec 6 issue about the difficulties of replicating scientific tests, yep, that means, getting the same results twice, or thrice or howevermanytimes, most of the time you can't do it. Something happens. Expectations? Rigorousness of test? Some kind of change that happens due to the observations? They call it something like test fatigue. At any rate, scientists loathe it as it proves that they can't prove anything any more than anyone else can!

Moving excerpt from Joyce Carol Oates' book about her husband's death. Beautifully done. So different from the Didion in mood and pace and outlook.

Only one more to read in December as it was a double issue! Yippee!

huhtikuu 2, 2011, 1:47 pm

I was really happy to see Haruki Murakami's "UFO in Kushiro", which is set against the backdrop of the Great Hanshin Earthquake in Kobe in 1995, reprinted in the last issue. Besides being topical (of course), it's kind of great.

huhtikuu 2, 2011, 8:49 pm

Hi MM - great to see you here! I like hearing about good reads up ahead, they are incentives!

Great Quote from today's reading (on energy efficiency) Dec 20-27 2010 issue: "Coincidentally or not, the growth of American refrigerator volume has been roughly paralleled by the growth of American body-mass index." p80

huhtikuu 3, 2011, 6:07 pm

FASCINATING article on the re-opening of the Vatican Library in the 1.3.11 issue.... I wish I had some reason to do research there.

toukokuu 10, 2011, 10:46 am

Polished off a pile of NYers on a trip -- articles as varied as crowd control (that was a tough one to read, plus a graphic pic) to tracking down a quote attributed to George Eliot that is most likely in error -- but one that goes all the way back to 1881! A good piece on the latest thinking about food allergies, a topic of interest around here.