Books

20 T.S. Eliot Quotes for Better Living and Creative Inspiration

This weekend marked the anniversary of the passing of modernist poet T.S. Eliot — a cat lover, former French teacher, past Faber & Faber director, and literary critic. Nearly 50 years after his death, the Nobel Prize-winning master scribe is still a beacon for artists of all ilk seeking life-affirming advice and the occasional oblique message to ponder. Start your new year with a few inspiring quotes from the… Read More

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Must-Hear Audio Books Narrated by Pop Culture Favorites

“As a narrator, [Edward] Herrmann has presence, and his rich, patrician voice is unmistakable, but he never upstages the text, instead drawing in the listener with authority and calm assurance. He has a voice we love to listen to,” wrote AudioFile Magazine of the famed character actor who passed away earlier this week. Herrmann’s distinctive tones have elevated the art of the narrator. We’re looking at other famous faces who went behind the scenes to give life to the literature we love. … Read More

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Beautiful Illustrations That Reimagine the Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales

In 1812, brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm published 86 dark stories that became known as the Grimms’ Fairy Tales. The book was presented as children’s literature, but the violent, sexual, and sinister narratives within painted a very different picture. In celebration of older brother Jacob Grimm’s birthday this week, we’re looking at beautifully illustrated retellings of the Grimms’ fairy tales by artists new and old. These stunning artworks prove that the Grimms continue to capture our imagination and curiosity more than 200 years later. … Read More

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10 Unique and Funky Literary Magazines To Check Out in 2015

In 2014, I started helping my MFA program pals with Atlas and Alice, a new literary magazine they started the previous year. Since then, I have been gaining an understanding of the submission economy and how arduous it is to sort through stories and essays and poems from the receiving end. This is just one part of the intense effort it takes to keep a literary magazine — with its flow of submissions in and final products out — going on a regular basis.

Almost always, literary magazines are run by their editors as a side hustle. Creating consistent content in a unique format is tremendously difficult, so it’s good literary citizenry to applaud boundary-pushing work. In that vein, and to connect readers and submitters with outlets, here’s a short list of particularly funky literary magazines which are doing something unique and cool with their platform. Check them out in 2015. … Read More

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Men of Honor, Vampires, Audiobooks, and ‘Gilmore Girls': Highlights From Edward Herrmann’s Career

As someone who has had a long relationship with the television show Gilmore Girls since it first came on the air in 2000, the news of Edward Herrman’s death felt like the loss of a family member. I’ve spent countless hours watching him move two steps forward, one step back as the patrician Connecticut grandfather, hurt and trying to restore his relationships with his fast-talking, coffee loving daughter and brainy granddaughter. While Gilmore Girls may have served as my introduction to the charms of Herrmann as an actor, once I was familiar with his frame and his sonorous voice, I nearly saw him everywhere, as befitting a wonderful breed of character actor that we don’t get everyday. Here are some highlights from his career. … Read More

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The Best of Literary Criticism in 2014

I’ll give it to you straight: 2014 was a weird year in literary criticism. There were a lot of “hybrid” pieces, the kind that I’m not altogether fond of. But there were, to be sure, a number of substantial essays and reviews that worked to open up possibilities in literary writing. Here, with mere hours remaining in the year, are the best pieces of literary criticism (that I can remember) from 2014. Did I miss something? Too bad. 2014 is over, and it doesn’t make sense to have two rage years in a row. … Read More

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2014: The Death of the Postmodern Novel and the Rise of Autofiction

The postmodern novel is dead. It is no longer what William James would call a living hypothesis: no committed literary novelist would now choose to write a postmodern fiction. Sure, genre and YA novelists may continue to churn out commodified, page-turning, loosely Victorian versions of the postmodern novel, but the robust fictional project of Pynchon, DeLillo, Coover, and even David Foster Wallace no longer holds sway over literary writing. In 2014, instead, many of the best novels were autofictions that vigorously reasserted the self. … Read More

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Book Publishing Predictions for 2015

What will book publishing bring in 2015? Shrouded as the industry is behind a veil woven of billions and billions of dollars, it’s difficult to say. But if you look hard enough — at the bestseller lists, the court cases, the controversies — you can glimpse through the metaphorical keyhole and into the back rooms where the deals are made. With this in mind, here is a somewhat reliable predictor for the publishing industry in 2015. … Read More

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