James Ellroy's astonishing Underworld USA Trilogy … is biblical in scale, catholic in its borrowing from conspiracy theories, absorbing to read, often awe-inspiring in the liberties taken with standard fictional presentation, and, in its imperfections and lapses, disconcerting.
"My father may have killed a man.'' So opens Stephen Elliott's riveting new book, The Adderall Diaries: A Memoir of Moods, Masochism, and Murder. It's the sort of line in which Elliott specializes: nakedly manipulative and all but impossible to resist.
In the introduction to her biography of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lori D. Ginzberg, a professor of history and women’s studies at Penn State, confesses that her previous writing has focused on “more ordinary women.” Perhaps that is what allowed Ginzberg to write an accessible, if slim, portrait
In June, Cass R. Sunstein’s confirmation as Barack Obama’s nominee for regulatory czar was hindered by Georgia senator Saxby Chambliss, who told online congressional newspaper The Hill, “[Sunstein] has said that animals ought to have the right to sue folks.” Chambliss was apparently referring to
I can't remember the first time I read Mercè Rodoreda's The Time of the Doves. It might have been when I was 13, living with my family in the high-rise suburbs of Madrid. It might have been when I was 17, back in Madrid with my mother for a few weeks in a sweltering rented room. Or it might have been
We normally think of angels as emissaries from God, incandescent beings that might be mistaken for aliens, or sentimental covers on Hallmark cards. They're perceived as the good guys, indicated by their everpresent accessory of the halo, practically a synonym for saintliness. But Chris Adrian intends
Every aging poet seems to write a book confronting his or her own mortality. By the time they do, many have already fallen into a rut, but John Koethe's philosophical and wistful Ninety-fifth Street is his best book yet. In these accessible and surprisingly powerful poems, Koethe looks back at his
A man dies under mysterious circumstances. A second man is called in to solve the mystery. But the second man fails to heed the implicit warnings left by the first man and soon tumbles into the rabbit hole. He is in grave danger. He solves the crime. Stasis is returned; life, of a sort, goes on.
We live in noise. The world is a booming, rustling, buzzing place to begin with (though many of us have shut out nature's clamor), and to that we have added every conceivable vibration of our own making and every possible means of assault, whether it's the vast, thrumming climate-controlling systems
In "Cellists", the final, exquisite story in Kazuo Ishiguro's new collection, an American woman pretends to be a world-famous cellist and agrees to tutor a promising young Hungarian in her hotel room in an unnamed Italian city. It soon emerges that she cannot play the cello at all: she merely believes