“I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten,” Ralph Waldo Emerson famously quipped, “even so, they have made me.” In this new bi-weekly series, Flavorwire plays professor to some of our favorite pop culture characters, assigning reading lists tailored to their temperaments or — in some cases — designed to make them into slightly better people. After all, even fictional characters can have their lives changed by books. Or so we imagine. This week, we recommend a reading list for Don Draper. … Read More
[Editor's note: For the next two Fridays, Flavorwire will be counting down our 20 most popular features of 2010. This post, which originally ran on September 2, 2010, comes in at position number 11.] Bookstores are dying. They’re dying because of jerks who are too cheap to buy a hardcover, or even a paperback, and too lazy to get a library card. Guys like the one from Julie Bosman‘s NY Times article, and this guy, and this guy. Even before we break into the eBooks discussion, think about everything else that reading is supposed to contend with these days — movies, video games, television, and the internet. And now that there’s competition even within the “book” medium, it’s no wonder that Barnes and Noble is closing a four-level shop (for those of you in New York, the Union Square Megastore is safe) and Borders agonizes through round after round of layoffs and store closings.
After the jump, please shed a tear, observe a moment of silence, then head to one of the top bookstores in the United States, and buy something fer chrissakes. … Read More
Why do we read memoirs of illness? Is it to be confronted with the weakness and fragility of the human body and the unjustness and cruelty of fate? To experience vicariously the vagaries of an unexpected life? To be reminded of our own relative health? No matter the reason, these narratives have become increasingly ubiquitous in recent years, so much so that the genre has a name. Chicago writer Paula Kamen — who added her story to the shelf with her 2006 book All in My Head — dubbed it “sick lit,” and, in her manifesto, defined it as “women fighting shame and isolation through telling their stories about ‘invisible’ illness.” … Read More
While the hype for this Saturday’s USA v. England match may be at a rolling boil, relatively speaking, soccer isn’t exactly in America’s DNA. If you just want to know who’s who in the World Cup, you can always check out the group guides and team profiles over at ESPN, the Guardian, or Bolas and Bandeiras. But what if you want to know what to watch for and what all the excitement is about? Well, you might just have to dig a bit deeper. To that end, we’ve selected a half dozen soccer reads that are perfect companions for the June madness that is upon us. … Read More