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A Reading Life
A READING LIFE
The Love She Left Behind
The death of a matriarch soon marks a chance for finely drawn characters to engage questions of social class, in this dark British comedy from an acclaimed London dramatist....
Sophie McManus on 7 Great Books Born from “Catastrophes”
The author of "The Unfortunates" on how life's hardest moments can make for stories "too rigorous and beautiful to be anything but electrifying."...
GRIN AND TONIC
It Was the Crest® of Times
"Call me—Ishmael—on my iPhone 6S."...
The World’s Descent
This week: literary critic Harold Bloom turns 85, as questions of what the future holds for "deep reading" loom large....
LIBRARY WITHOUT WALLS
The Serious Make-Believe of E. Nesbit
The prolific author of the Bastables and "Five Children and It" created adventures that still capture the magic of childhood. Essay by Michael Dirda....
Long Story Short: Etgar Keret on “The Seven Good Years”
A master storyteller talks to John Freeman about his new memoir of his family, lessons learned from Holocaust survivor parents, and climbing the narrowest house in the world....
The Famished Road
Porochista Khakpour rediscovers Ben Okri's Booker Prize-winning novel of Yoruban myth and modern urban struggle....
The Household Spirit
With elements of ghost stories and capers, a new novel centers on neighbors who challenge what we've come to expect from "unlikely friendships" in fiction. Review by Stefan Beck....
“Dust jackets on the wrong spines”: Joshua Cohen on Book of Numbers
The novelist talks with Christopher Byrd about search engines, identity, and the art of throwing nothing away....
Founding Grammars: How Early America’s War Over Words Shaped Today’s Language
An impassioned history of primary U.S. prose finds “entertaining historical perspective on these linguistic clashes.”...
Sarah Hepola: Detective Work on Your Own Life
The author of "Blackout" talks with Amy Benfer about the cost of alcoholism, "the gray zone of consent," and her memoir of addiction....
Sarah Hepola: My 5 Favorite Books on Addiction
Essential reading selected by the author of "Blackout"....