— Reading Gabriel García Márquez’s morbidity in the happiest country on earth. Proud to have edited Nina Martyris' lovely, striking essay in Guernica. (That's Gabo's childhood home in Cartegena, Colombia, pictured above. Photo by Lakshmi Govindrajan Javeri.)
— Alan Turing's reading list: here are the books he borrowed from his school library.
— Love this: The Seattle Public Library launches a Books on Bikes program.
— The fascinating friendship between Mary McCarthy and Hannah Arendt, brought to us by Michelle Dean in The New Yorker.
— Bulgakov's ghost and the haunting of Russia.
— I'm rather shocked it needs to be said, but: "In Defense of Alice Munro."
— A spectacular coup for Melville House Books.
— What Margaret Atwood's fiction reveals about bikesharing, rape police, and the poverty trap.
— From "Which Book at Which Age?" to "A History of Outrage" to "Title Copycats" … The Judy Blume File.
— In Vogue, Sheila Heti writes about what she didn't learn from reading Judy Blume.
— Well, I've known this my whole life: why reading is like falling in love.
— "I think all writers write from the time they're really young, and you
just start asking the question, 'What if?' What if you were sitting here
next to me and you turned into a cat? I have a story. So I was writing
at a really young age, but it took me a long time to be brave enough to
become a published writer, or to try to become a published writer." — Katherine Applegate interviewed on "All Things Considered." (h/t Amy H.)
— "What happens when the dictators are gone?" The next generation of Latin American fiction.
— Thanks, Vela Magazine, for reading my Guernica story on Muriel Rukeyser and "literary archeology." Also, the editor of Rukeyser's once-lost novel, Savage Coast, writes about this art of recovery in The Paris Review.
— Kathryn Schulz says that Americanah by Chimamanda Adichie is "a new kind of migration story." It is "one that reflects a political shift and suggests a literary one."
— Mohsin Hamid, author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist, interviewed in Bookforum.
— An Egyptian author was sentenced to five years in prison for his collection of short stories, Where is God?.
— Neil Gaiman's tour of weird London.
— Test scores in writing are dropping for teens — but their writing is amazing.
— Rogue's gallery: A modest proposal for Detroit and a fire sale of art.
— Join us at Literary Detroit this Wednesday for poetry, comedy, and writing as we throw a party for Matthew Olzmann and his bracing book of poems, Mezzanines!
— Watch out, watchdogs: Investigative journalists are the target of Wisconsin lawmakers, who slipped in a last-minute motion in the budget bill to kick them out of their offices. I wrote about it for the Columbia Journalism Review.
— Student journalists look for a scoop on school security. It took an unnerving turn. (h/t Chris M.)
— "Fortresses of solitude." On the urgent rarity of journalist access to prison isolation units.
— Marco Rubio's private prison connection. Via the Columbia Journalism Review.
— A Pennsylvania judge was sentenced to 28 years in prison for selling — literally, selling — kids to the prison system.
— "Little, big." Is that the way to translate the two ideas for fighting global poverty?
— "Hot in my backyard." In case you missed this look at the fascinating storytelling about climate change from This American Life.
— Well, here's one feisty reaction to being asked to write for free.
— I'm so pleased about Natasha Trethewey's re-appointment as the United States Poet Laureate.
— "Why Poetry Can't Find its Public." Maybe somebody should send a memo to Natasha. (h/t Jacob C.)
— "We live in a world made up more of story than
stuff. … Being attentive to the needs of others might not be the
point of life, but it is the work of life." Jonathan Safran Foer writes on "How Not To Be Alone" in The New York Times.
— Mary Roach takes a trip down our tubes.
— "This is the first time, ever, anywhere, that
colonial victims have been permitted to sue the British state." On
Kenya, Empire, and the Mau Mau in the Los Angeles Review of Books.
— Flip the News is an interesting experiment: the blog flips the gender or race of news stories. "The point here is to shine some light on the way news organizations
write about people and strive for more balanced, respectful narratives."
— Sally Ride received — posthumously — the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
— Barbara Brenner, who did so much as a breast cancer and women's health activist, died last month. She was pivotal in pushing for greater attention and action against the environmental causes of cancer, including industrial pollution.
— Terrific investigation by The Arizona Republic on charter schools being used for their board members' profit
— The "transient states" of artist Mary Cassatt.
— The comic Hyperbole and a Half has done so much to illustrate — in every way — the experience of depression, with humor and lightness of touch. Here, if you haven't seen it yet, is the latest.
— Add them to your to-read list: three immersion nonfiction classics.
— The New York Times celebrates the 100th anniversary of Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time a special section.
— Why do writers fall in love with Odessa?