Jeffrey Eugenides

50 Novels Guaranteed to Make You a Better Person

It’s a new year, and resolutions are flying left and right. Here’s one that’s always on everyone’s mind, beginning of the year or no: how to be a better person. Well, since science keeps proving that reading literary fiction accomplishes that very fact, why not attack a novel in order to spruce up your heart and mind? Click through for 50 novels to make you kinder, cleverer, more productive, and a whole lot more open to the experience of… Read More

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Staff Picks: Flavorwire’s Favorite Cultural Things This Week

Need a great book to read, album to listen to, or TV show to get hooked on? The Flavorwire team is here to help: in this weekly feature, our editorial staffers recommend the cultural object or experience they’ve enjoyed most in the past seven days. Click through for our picks, and tell us what you’ve been loving in the comments. … Read More

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20 Photos of Famous Authors in Awesome Costumes

Halloween is fast approaching, and if you’re the writerly (read: introverted, inside-cat) type, you may be experiencing some anxiety about dressing up in a costume and walking the streets. But take heart: some of your very favorite authors have been known to don a costume from time to time, too. So it must be cool, right? This slideshow is also appropriate for those itching to wear a literary costume this year but who have already worn out their Poe ravens and DFW bandannas: go meta and dress as one of your favorite authors in one of their costumes. Click through to see some amazing writers dressed to the… Read More

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Flavorwire Exclusive: Authors Write About Their Favorite Streets in Literature

People are fond of talking about their favorite characters in books, but sometimes, in books like Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited or Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, structures also play a central part in the story. So when we heard about the debut of Flaneur, a magazine that “presents one street per issue,” we started thinking more and more about the streets where some of our favorite novels take place, and decided to ask several authors about their favorite streets in literature. Click through to see their responses. … Read More

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The 50 Books Everyone Needs to Read, 1963-2013

The thing about reading is this: it takes a long time. There are innumerable books in the world, and many more good ones than can be read by any mortal in a lifetime. It’s hard to choose — especially if you’re a slow reader. So, to go along with the list of the best albums from 1963-2013, here you will find a single must-read book from each of the last 50… Read More

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10 LGBT-Themed Novels That Every Student Should Read

The California Department of Education’s new recommended reading list, which was released last week, is causing some controversy because — gasp! — it includes a handful of books with LGBT themes. Though the list, which contains over 7,800 books, recommends only 32 that fall into the “gay-themed” category, several conservative critics are saying predictably nasty things. Never mind that this list has included books with gay and transgender characters for the past ten years. Between this news and the Supreme Court marriage equality hearings, we figured it was a good time to throw in our two cents: ten novels with LGBT themes that we think every student should read. We tried to suggest a range of books, from classics to YA, but since there are so many and we can’t list them all, add your favorites in the comments. … Read More

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A Collection of Suspiciously Similar Book Covers

Sometimes, while we’re browsing through book catalogues, or idly pulling things off the shelves in bookstores, as we often do, we are suddenly struck with a sense of deja vu. Haven’t we, um, seen this book before? Of course, there are thousands of examples of different books using the same clip art, which, while lazy, is probably unavoidable, but what about the more nebulous resemblances? After the jump, a few book covers and their suspiciously similar (we won’t say rip-offs, but we sometimes might imply it) pairs. Let us know what you think (or if we missed a particularly egregious one) in the comments! … Read More

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10 Essential Alternative Anthologies for the Modern Reader

We’ve all been exposed to the classic anthologies — your Nortons, your Oxfords, your Best American series — but sometimes we need to step out of the box a little bit and reach for the anthologies that weren’t handed out to everyone we know in Freshman Lit, whether because they’re too specific or just too out there. Here, we’ve put together a list of a few alternative anthologies that we think should be on everyone’s to-read list. They might not be quite what you’re used to, but hey, it’s always good to learn something new. And of course, these are simply the anthologies that have spoken to us — there are many more alternative collections, some more or less essential depending on your interests, so we hope that you’ll add your own favorites to our list in the comments. … Read More

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Photos of Famous Authors and Their Bicycles

It’s the height of bike riding season here in New York — it’s no longer so hot that you can’t do more than duck from air conditioned shop to air conditioned shop, but it’s still beautiful, and as the air continues to crisp, the cyclist will be out in numbers. And hey, in another life, one of them might have been Leo Tolstoy. We spotted this delightful photo of Leo Tolstoy and his bicycle — he learned to ride at 67! — over at Open Culture, and we were intrigued. Bike riding seems like an appropriate pastime for authors (all those bike-powered book tours and long lazy afternoons), so we thought we’d hunt around to see how many other famous writers liked to zoom about on two wheels. Click through to check out our gallery, and let us know if we missed your favorite snap of a writer on a bike in the comments. … Read More

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10 Great Novels About the Immigrant Experience

This week saw the release of Karolina Waclawiak’s debut novel How to Get Into the Twin Palms, a wonderful little book that made us fall in love with the idea of the immigrant novel all over again. A Polish émigré herself, Waclawiak’s tale is a twist on the traditional coming-to-America novel, her heroine an immigrant trying to pass as another kind of immigrant, testing the waters, in the LA heat. But off-center as it may be, the book got us thinking about some of our favorite novels about the immigrant experience, a few of which we’ve collected here — read through our list of great fictional immigrant and émigré stories after the jump, and as ever, if we’ve missed your own favorite, please add it to our list in the comments! … Read More

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