Pittsburgh has always beendespite its industrial reputationa great city in which to be a writer. Its active, close-knit writing community has seen the rise of several luminaries with Pittsburgh connections, such as Annie Dillard and Stewart O’Nan, and the caliber of Pittsburgh’s writing community today is better than ever. Lee Gutkind has assembled a reunion of sorts with writers from across the nation, as well as the up-and-coming stars on the local sceneeach of whom has a Pittsburgh connection. Many grew up in the region, others attended college here: all of them have an association with the city. The resulting collection of essays is both gentle and jarring, eclectic and persuasive, covering a range of topicsfrom a stripper’s work ethic to West Virginia’s famed Matewan shootout, Atlantic City’s Boardwalk before Donald Trump, and the uses of poetry to better understand one’s own life. Although Pittsburgh is not the subject of most of the essays, these writers are bound by their affinity for the written word and their collective fondness for Pittsburgh.