Watch: Marcel the Shell Has a New Video

When she’s not making Republicans explode with her “pro-abortion” romantic comedy or telling wonderfully elaborate fart jokes, sometimes Jenny Slate is a… Read More

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50 of the Scariest Short Stories of All Time

It’s that time of year again, when the pumpkins come out, the fake cobwebs are hung and we feel that dormant urge to be chilled, thrilled and spooked to our bones. Get out your flashlights, because a scary story awaits — actually, make that fifty of them. Now, there’s more to scary stories than goblins, ghouls, blood and your general horror — here there be monsters of many kinds, existential and literal, extraordinary and everyday. And remember: like beauty, fear is in the bloody eye of the beholder. So whether you yearn for classic horror or literary fiction guaranteed to make your skin crawl, read on. If you dare! … Read More

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Katha Pollit on Abortion and Her Controversial New Book ‘Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights’

In Katha Pollitt’s new book Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights, the longtime poet, essayist, and columnist for The Nation turns her eye towards the state of abortion today in 2014. What she finds is stark. Forty years after Roe Vs. Wade, abortion is under attack — from the erosion of state laws to the closing of clinics to the wishy-washy language used even by so-called liberals (i.e. “Safe, legal, and rare.) In Pro, Pollitt argues for a new framework for abortion where it’s normalized, safe, and a humdrum part of women’s lives, in a world where women’s health — physically and economically — is prioritized. It’s a challenging, smart book, and it will change what you think about and talk about when the topic of abortion comes up. Over a coffee on the upper west side, I talked with Pollitt about her book and why we need to pay attention to the political attack on abortion. … Read More

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10 Scary Stories You Can Listen to Right Now

Nothing takes us back to our childhood faster than listening intently while someone reads us a story. Since Halloween is right around the corner, how about we make it a scary story—perfect to curl up with on a dark and stormy night. We might be too old for trick-or-treating, but no one can stop us from enjoying these creepy audiobooks and radio dramas. Campfire tales, urban legends whispered about during sleepovers, and bedtime stories have nothing on these chillers. Happy Halloween. … Read More

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10 New Translated Books to Read Right Now

Next month, American readers will be able to suss out why Patrick Modiano (of all people) won the Nobel Prize, when Yale University Press releases Suspended Sentences: Three Novellas. In the meantime, here are ten amazing new (or fairly new, or about-to-be-published) translated works that demand to be read right now. … Read More

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Zadie Smith, R.L. Stine, Ben Marcus & More Collaborate on Wild Exquisite Corpse Short Story

Perhaps in college you were interested in the surrealists, and you played Exquisite Corpse. Or, more likely, perhaps in… Read More

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‘Deep Down Dark’ Is a Tremendous Book About the 33 Chilean Miners and the Human Spirit

The story of the Chilean miners, Los 33, was incredible. They survived a catastrophic mining accident that left them trapped 2,300 feet underground for 69 days of endless darkness. As it happened in 2010, it made for a gripping, dramatic news story, especially when we found out that — a miracle! — they were all alive, seventeen days after the initial collapse. … Read More

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‘Blood Splatters Quickly': 5 Life Lessons From the Infamous Ed Wood

Most people know of Edward Wood, Jr. from Tim Burton’s Ed Wood, the 1994 “comedy-drama” starring Johnny Depp. Or if you haven’t seen the film, you may know of him simply as the cross-dressing auteur responsible for what is widely considered the worst film ever made, Plan 9 From Outer Space, and other cinematic effronteries, like Jail Bait and Bride of the Monster. The Burton film does a decent job of detailing a certain period of Wood’s life, even if it leaves out some of the sordid bits. We already know that Ed Wood (more or less) invented the genius-hack archetype in cinema, but that’s only half the story. As it turns out, he spent much of his later life writing articles and stories for proto-pornographic magazines in Hollywood. … Read More

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Dating Advice From Classic Non-Jane Austen Literature

This week, Melville House released The Jane Austen Rules: A Classic Guide to Modern Love by scholar Sinéad Murphy. It’s a dating advice book culled from the Austen oeuvre, with chapters entitled things like “Dress Up,” “Find a Man, Not a Guy,” and “Be Quite Independent.”

This witty, brief new guide is part of an “Austen advice” mini empire, coming on the heels of Elizabeth Kantor’s rather conservative The Jane Austen Guide to Happily Ever After and William Deresiewicz’s A Jane Austen Education and many other books of similar intent. … Read More

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Megan Amram’s Video for ‘Science… For Her!’ is The Funniest Thing You’ll See Today

Megan Amram, Parks & Rec writer and one of the masters of Twitter comedy, is releasing a faux-factual science book… Read More

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