paper trail

Kate Atkinson wins a Costa (again)

Karl Ove Knausgaard

Only a couple of years after winning the Costa novel award for Life After Life, Kate Atkinson has received it again for the sequel, A God in Ruins, making her the first writer ever to win three Costa prizes.

Bookslut founder Jessa Crispin adds her voice to the conversation about Claire Vaye Watkins’s “On Pandering” and Marlon James’s assertion that white women’s tastes shape the publishing industry: “It is easier to complain about the power you don’t have than to think about how you are exerting the power you do have. And fighting for your own rights is not the same as fighting for equality. Women working for gender equality, rather than the equality of everyone, are not heroes.”

Mark Zuckerberg recently bade farewell to his Year of Books, having made it through two books a month in 2015: “Reading has given me more perspective on a number of topics,” he wrote on his Facebook page, “from science to religion, from poverty to prosperity, from health to energy to social justice, from political philosophy to foreign policy, and from history to futuristic fiction. This challenge has been intellectually fulfilling, and I come away with a greater sense of hope and optimism that our society can make greater progress in all of these areas.” If you’re wondering how he reached that conclusion, you can explore his reading list further here.

Meanwhile, it seems another tech billionaire has had a still greater influence on America’s reading habits lately: The New York Times draws our attention to “the Bill Gates bump”—which has been enjoyed this year by books such as Eula Biss’s On Immunity—and interviews Gates about his sideline as a book critic.

And the Millions has previewed the year in fiction, which will include new works by Don DeLillo, Julian Barnes, Annie Proulx, Dana Spiotta, Darryl Pinckney, and Curtis Sittenfeld, poems by Dana Gioia, and the debut novel of short-story writer David Means, as well as translations of Herta Müller, Javier Marías, Álvaro Enrigue, and Karl Ove Knausgaard.

Roxane Gay’s book Hunger, about food and the body, will also be out later this year: “Soon, you realize that the whole world might be your apartment, because there’s no room for you out in the world.” And in a conversation with the LA Review of Books, Gay named some of her “favorite, realest writers,” including Merritt Tierce, Randa Jarrar, and xTx.

The Undefeated, ESPN’s site covering the intersection of sports and race, will finally be launching in 2016.